Margaret River is one of the world's most geographically isolated wine regions. The region is home to some of Australia's most prestigious wineries and is know for growing award-winning sauvignon blanc, semillon, chardonnay and cabernet sauvignon.
The six wines below come from Clairault Streicker, Cullen Wines, Fraser Gallop Estate, Howard Park, Voyager Estate, and Victory Point Wines. Each showcase the region's unique Mediterranean maritime climate, and champions the varietals Margaret River is rightly celebrated for.
2019 Clairault Streicker Streicker Ironstone Block Old Vine ChardonnayAromatics of stone fruits including pear and white nectarine, nougat, brioche and the faintest hint of meringue dance in juxtaposition with subtle toast elements. Enticing. These high-density vines (5714ha) are now 34 years old, and provide a textural expansiveness, balanced by pristine lines of fine white fruit tannins which are braced by succulent natural acidity and a quenching minerality on the finish. Simply put, it’s delicious. Clairault Streicker's chief winemaker is Bruce Dukes.
Viticulturist Chris Gillmore says: Clairault Streicker wines are authentic and classically styled and are crafted from sustainably farmed fruit. Our Clairault wines are made with selected parcels of fruit from our four Margaret River vineyards, showing strong regional characteristics. The wines within our Streicker range are crafted from a single vineyard block, embracing the growing conditions, personalities and varietal characteristics of the chosen site.
Best enjoyed: The 2019 drinks wonderfully with roast chicken, grilled veal chops, and is sublime with crusty bread and duck liver parfait.
RRP $50 | Drink now or to 2030 | clairaultstreickerwines.com.au
2020 Cullen Diana MadelineGarnett with tinges of ruby purple, the bouquet has notes of mulberry, chocolate, rose, iodine and salty plum. On the palate first impressions have juicy berry fruit, mulberry, plum, cherry, This unctuous fruit is framed by fine grained tannins and Wilyabrup earth, ironstone, and dust which expresses the heat of the vintage and compliments the concentration of the fruit.
Winemaker Vanya Cullen says: Nature shines through so beautifully and powerfully in our wines; it’s present everywhere in abundance. The breathtaking beauty of the Indian Ocean, lush forests and the Mediterranean maritime climate. So wild and free.
Best enjoyed: Pair the 2020 Diana Madeline with Margaret River wagu beef or Arkady lamb.
RRP $150 | Drink now or to 2070 | cullenwines.com.au
2019 Fraser Gallop Estate Parterre CabernetThe 2019 Parterre Cabernet Sauvignon is juicy, bright and beautiful. 85/8/5/2 per cent cabernet sauvignon (Houghton clone)/malbec/petit verdot/cabernet franc. Matured for 18 months in French oak. The mention of Houghton clone in Wilyabrup is important, for the particular way that it expresses itself: supple, succulent, red fruited and powerful; it imbues the wines with grace and ease. So too, this release. This has all these attributes, layers of pomegranate, raspberry, red licorice, salt bush, cassis and peppercorn. A beautiful wine, with a proven track record for graceful ageing. This vintage will be no exception. The wine is elegantly formed and medium-bodied with fine, supple tannins and lovely balance.
Winemaker Clive Otto says: Our wines are a true expression of the here and now, altering only due to the vagaries of working with nature. They embody the region – made from our own grapes grown on the property, wild-fermented and made gently with a hands-off, minimal intervention approach in our estate winery. Our goal is to capture and express the best of the estate and nuances of the property as a whole.
Best enjoyed: The 2019 matches perfectly with a roast leg of lamb.
RRP $60 | Drink to 2037 | frasergallopestate.com.au
NV Howard Park Jeté BrutPale lemon in the glass with a fine bead, this Western Australian sparkling wine captures ethereal orchard fruit freshness underpinned by hints of cashew nut and freshly baked brioche. Notes of oyster shell salinity, white blossom, lemon meringue, straw, custard apples, and white raspberry add complexity and depth to the enthralling bouquet. The palate is marked by a tantalising, bright acidity and elegant, yet creamy mousse concluding in a dry finish.
Cellar door manager Charlotte Dowden says: We’re fortunate to have vineyards in Margaret River and the Great Southern. The fruit for the Jeté comes off our own SWA Certified Mt Barker and Porongorup vineyards where the cool climate is perfectly suited to growing fruit with a fine acidity and depth of flavour. The region is known for cabernet and chardonnay, and I believe you can taste the craftsmanship and passion in our expressions of these varieties, and they really do leave the drinker with a strong sense of place and provenance.
Best enjoyed: Pair with pan-seared scallops with lemon, or Asian spiced crab cakes.
RRP $42 | Drink now | howardparkwines.com.au
2019 Victory Point Wines Cabernet SauvignonThe nose displays a wide range of fruits; reds to blues to blacks. Spicy and leafy aromas give way to chestnut notes with respectful oak. The generous mid palate shows redcurrant, blueberry and blackberry. Hints of cardamom and a pleasing campfire smoke provide backend structure. This elegant wine will age well.
Owner Judith Berson says: Margaret River is a special place to make wine. It is the most isolated wine region in the world and in just over 50 years has skyrocketed to the top of premium cabernet sauvignon and chardonnay production. The pristine environment has been looked after by the Wadandi people for over 50,000 years. There is an incredible sense of community, with many tastings and events throughout the year to share knowledge.
Best enjoyed: Pair with slow-braised beef or venison, grilled portobello mushrooms and a side of gratin dauphinois.
RRP $55 | Drink to 2035 | victorypointwines.com
2021 Voyager Estate ChardonnayPale straw in colour, notes of citrus pith, grapefruit, white flowers and nougat on the nose. The palate has a vibrant citrus line, with savoury, complex layers, and minerality.
Chief winemaker Tim Shand says: There's no better place to make wine. I love chardonnay and cabernet for starters! I love the vivid sunsets over vineyards nestled within Karri Forest, the red gravel dirt and the wild coast. The abundance of produce from sea and land. It feels like god’s own winemaking country.
Best enjoyed: Try the 2021 with pan-seared fish, scallops and a creamy citrus sauce.
RRP $60 | Drink to 2031 | voyagerestate.com.au