Personal Connection To Margaret River
In 1976, just like the pioneer settlers before them, Mark Lewis and his family left England setting sail for Fremantle and a new life. They spent time in Perth and Melbourne, before putting down roots in Margaret River. Upon completion of his education, Mark embarked on a successful legal career that would take him from Australia to London, Tokyo, Moscow and Warsaw before culminating with a post in the Cayman Islands, where he met his partner, Sarah.
Mark and Sarah have always admired Margaret River’s pristine natural beauty from its rocky coastline with world-class surf beaches to the breathtaking ancient Karri forests beyond.
Equally enticing were the vineyards and internationally acclaimed wines that have placed Margaret River firmly on the world wine map.
After years of visiting the area with Mark’s sons, George and Dylan, the couple were able to realise a life long dream of operating an established vineyard in Margaret River.
Single Vineyard Wines
Cape Landing had an established reputation, supplying premium fruit to major regional wine makers for nearly twenty years, under the leadership of previous owners Larry and Cheryl de Jong when Mark and Sarah took the reins in 2016.
Taking time to learn the unique qualities of the vineyard and understand it’s potential, Mark and Sarah’s first two vintages at the helm saw the continued supply of fruit to local Margaret River winemakers.
The consistent quality of the fruit produced each vintage, and the wine making potential, finally compelled them to develop a Cape Landing brand and label, and start making their own unique range of single vineyard wines establishing Cape Landing as one of Margaret River’s premium labels.
“Cape Landing is picturesque, the vines well established and mature, the fruit quality superb, but it was the moment I first saw the vineyard’s expansive main dam and water supply, that I knew this was the place for us.”
Mark Lewis, Cape Landing
Matt Barling (Vineyard Manager) & James Harris (Viticulturist)
Cape Landing’s vineyard is gently sloping, well drained, and its soil profile consists primarily of Treeton Low Slopes with gravelly duplex (Forest Grove) and pale grey mottled Mungite, perfectly suited to making fragrant, textured and pure wines.
Vine rows are oriented north-south, and a vertical shoot positioning trellis system is used throughout Cape Landing.
The vineyard was first planted in 1998 with Cabernet Sauvignon (2.5ha), Shiraz (1.96ha), Chardonnay (2.08ha), Semillon (1.6ha) and Sauvignon Blanc (4.19ha).
In 2019 Semillon vines were removed and replaced with Gingin Chardonnay, cloned from our existing established Block CL6 Gingin Chardonnay.
In 2023 0.5ha of our Cabernet Sauvignon were grafted over to Malbec to provide use with either a new grape variety in its own right, or as a blending option with Cabernet Sauvignon.
A new 0.7ha block of Clone 95 Chardonnay (Block CL3) was built and planted in 2023, bringing the total vineyard size to approx 15ha.
Experienced Vineyard Manager Matt Barling and Viticulturist James Harris manage the vineyard year-round, using a combination of traditional spur and cane pruning, shoot thinning, leaf removal and bunch thinning to carefully manage vine yields, airflow and sunlight. A sustainable approach to water management and soil biodiversity is applied at all times.
"Cape Landing’s rolling hills, gravelly duplex soils and abundant water supply are just ideal for production of premium Margaret River fruit"
James Harris, Viticulturist
The Margaret River wine region is located in the south-west corner of Western Australia, stretching 100km from north to south, between Cape Naturaliste and Cape Leeuwin, uniquely surrounded by ocean on three sides.
“It’s difficult to think of any other vineyards in the world that are only a few kilometres from great surf.” – Jancis Robinson, MW
A mild, Mediterranean climate and a ‘belting sea breeze’ combined with ancient gravel soils contribute to Margaret River’s ideal conditions for fine wine production.
Margaret River wines are known for their fruit purity, elegance, structure and consistency, producing 20% of Australia’s premium wines, from just 3% of Australia’s total crush [Source – Wine Australia, Regional Snapshot 2017 – Margaret River].
“The top rank of Margaret River Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon is, simply put, in the top rank in the world. And by that, I'm including the likes of Burgundy (for Chardonnay) and Bordeaux and Napa Valley (for Cabernet Sauvignon)”
Matt Kramer, WineSpectator.com
Bruce Dukes & Remi Guise
For 20 years Cape Landing cultivated outstanding grapes used by some of the region’s most decorated winemakers; including Leeuwin Estate, Xanadu and Cape Mentelle.
All that changed in 2018 when wine makers Bruce Dukes and Remi Guise came on board and began crafting Cape Landing’s first Sauvignon Blanc and a Reserve Cabernet Sauvignon.
Bruce and Remi have a philosophy based on picking fruit at optimal perfume and flavour and creating wines that are a pure expression of quality fruit.
A full range of Estate and Reserve wines followed with the 2019 vintage. A Reserve Chardonnay and a Reserve Syrah, were added to the range with a first Rosé produced in 2021.
The 2019 vintage also saw the first production of our flagship Blackwood Series wines – with a limited release Blackwood Chardonnay and Blackwood Cabernet Sauvignon. A Blackwood Syrah and a Blackwood Silver Eye Sauvignon Blanc have now also been added to the Blackwood range.
General Manager & Apiarist
Cape Landings’ General Manager, Eli Urquhart, has a ‘hands on’ and very practical understanding of vineyards and is a huge advocate of Margaret River’s world class potential.
Eli brings a unique skill set to the ongoing development of Cape Landing’s vineyard and entire property.
With extensive vineyard experience, and fully qualified as a carpenter and builder, there isn’t much that Eli cannot deal with, and he works alongside our vineyard management and winemaking teams taking care of Cape Landing’s general requirements, including water storage, irrigation, dams, windmills and machine sheds.
Eli is also our resident apiarist taking care of Cape Landing’s expanding number of Bee Hives.
Our Bee Hives contribute to production of Cape Landing’s unique ‘Blackwood’ Vineyard Honey.
Vineyard Management, VIiticulture, Winemaking, Pruning and Fruit Picking
Throughout the growing season, our winemakers, vineyard managers and viticulturist meet regularly in the vineyard, working as a team to ensure optimal vine development and the production of exceptional fruit and superb wines.
There is attention to detail in everything we do that comes only with time and experience, right down to an appreciation of the individual characteristics of each group of vines in each vineyard block.
We are also supported by our seasonal teams of pruners and fruit pickers, regional contractors, fantastic neighbours and very capable local talent that often join us for wine events and wine tastings.
Cape Landing's Wine Dogs
Wherever wine is made, you’ll likely find loyal canines snoozing in the cellar or roaming the vineyard. Australian Shepherds, Beau and Jasper, are Cape Landing’s ‘Wine Dogs’.
Beau – Loves bones, especially bones ‘borrowed’ from other dogs.
Jasper – biscuits and desiccated coconut whenever he arrives at the vineyard.
Beau – Serial sock thief! Prone to teasing innocent victims before returning thoroughly dog slobbered swag.
Jasper – Just hanging out in Matt’s pick-up truck.
Beau – Water: Sea, rivers, dams – any time of the year.
Jasper – Not working too hard!