Cullen 'Diana Madeline' 2004 ~ Margaret River W.A. (Certified Biodynamic)
One of the most famous, and collected, Australian wines.
Jeremy Oliver 97 /100
Bob Campbell 95 /100
James Halliday 95 /100
Stephen Tanzer 94 /100
James Suckling 93 /100
Jamie Goode 93 /100
The Wine Front 93 /100
These wines have impeccable provenance having been stored in temperature controlled bonded wine storage from release.
Bottled under screwcap to guarantee the wine will taste and age how the winemaker intended.
Bob Campbell "Fine, tight and powerful red that is approachable now, but will develop magnificantly in the decade or two ahead. An exquisitely balanced wine that delivers a wonderful array of fruit and spice flavours with great subtelty." (12-Jul-2007)
James Halliday "Excellent hue and depth; a complex, medium to full-bodied web of texture and flavour; perfectly balanced oak and tannins supporting blackcurrant fruit; long finish." (21-Feb-2006)
Cullen Wines has been run according to biodynamic farming principles since 2003, having adopted organic methods in 1998. They have been been certified as "A Grade Biodynamic" by the BFA of Australia since 2004. Cullen Wines were the first winery in Australia to be certified carbon neutral.
The winery produce only 20,000 cases of wine each year, across all varietals.
Numerous prizes have been won by this wine over many vintages. For example: the International Wine Challenge awarded the 2007 vintage Silver and the 2009 vintage Bronze.
The wine is a "Bordeaux Blend": around 60% Cabernet Sauvignon and 30% Merlot. The Bordeaux Blend - a phrase conceived by British Wine Merchants in the nineteenth century - is any combination of those grape varieties used to make the red wines of Bordeaux. These include: Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc, Petit Verdot, Carmenere and Malbec. The vast majority of grapes used are Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot, with the the remainder - where used - representing only a small percentage of the blend.
Winegrowing began on the Cullen property in Margaret River 50 years ago. Studies in the early 1960’s showed that Margaret River had some very special qualities. The climate was particularly suited to growing Bordelais varieties and in particular Cabernet Sauvignon. On the advice of eminent agronomist Dr John Gladstones, Dr Kevin and Diana Cullen were involved in the first planting of a trial acre of vines at Wilyabrup in 1966. The encouraging results of this led to the planting of 18 acres of vines on their sheep and cattle farm in 1971, including their first Cabernet Sauvignon vines. Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Semillon, Merlot and Cabernet Franc were planted between 1976 and 1978.
While Kevin Cullen worked as a doctor to support the business, Diana Cullen supervised and managed the winery and become Chief Winemaker in 1981. Di made history in 1982 being the first woman to win a trophy in the Perth Royal Show. In 1983 she was joined by daughter Vanya, who was later appointed as Chief Winemaker in 1989 and Managing Director from 1999.
In 2003 the WA Wine Industry Association introduced the annual Diana Madeline Cullen Award for Outstanding Contribution by an Individual to the WA Wine Industry in her honour.
Vanya Cullen received the "Australian Winemaker of the Year" award from Gourmet Traveller Wine magazine in 2000 and was voted "Woman of the Year" by UK based wine magazine The Drinks Business in 2008, becoming the first Australian to receive the award.
In 2005, the iconic Diana Madeline Cabernet Merlot was elevated to the top Langton’s classification category of ‘Exceptional’ – reserved for just 11 Australian wine.
Margaret River is a maritime wine region in the south-western corner of Western Australia. Margaret River's winemakers are particularly proud of the region's temperate, coastal location – and of its similarities to that of Bordeaux (despite being 10 degrees of latitude closer to the equator than Bordeaux).