About Grace Farm

Nestled in the Cowaramup Brook valley and the lee of the Leeuwin Ridge in the Margaret River sub region of Wilyabrup, Grace Farm is a small, family-owned vineyard that uses organic principles to produce premium hand-crafted wines.

The Property

Grace Farm has a special location within the Wilyabrup sub region of the Margaret River wine-growing district of Western Australia. The property is bounded by Caves Road to the east, Cowaramup Bay Road to the north, the Leeuwin-Naturaliste National Park to the south and private bushland to the west. It is 12 kilometres from Margaret River and less than two kilometres from the Indian Ocean and the world-class surf breaks of Gracetown. The Cowaramup Brook runs through the property, while other creeks and springs succour the enormous variety of vegetation, from jarrah and marri woodland, to melaleuca, peppermint and karri groves. Bushland makes up half the property while the other half, previously used for cattle grazing, has been developed as a vineyard. In addition to the vines, organic vegetables and fruit trees are also cultivated.

Much of the bush is in pristine condition and has a high degree of biodiversity, with rare orchid and marsupial species among the many documented. Balancing care of the bushland with agricultural activity is at the forefront of Grace Farm’s management objectives.

The Vineyards

The vineyard has the soils, topography and climatic conditions to produce the finest wines, according to Grace Farm viticulturist and vineyard manager, Tim Quinlan, who was involved in the initial soil-testing and feasibility phase. Each vineyard block has distinctive rock and soil characteristics which Tim carefully matched to the correct variety. He directed the owners in the planting of grapes for which the region is famous – chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, semillon, cabernet sauvignon and the blending varieties malbec, petit verdot and cabernet franc.

The initial vines were planted in 2006. Grace Farm was one of the first vineyards in the district to plant the vines into weed-matting, avoiding the repeated herbicide sprays which often accompany vineyard establishment. The vines are grown in a sustainable way with organic-based fertilizers and compost produced on site. While this meant a longer-than-average time to first vintage, the quality of the resulting wines and the reduced environmental impact made it worth the wait.

Terroir

The distinct geology of the Leeuwin-Naturaliste ridge, which supports the area’s biodiversity, is also fundamental for the soil condition of the vineyard. Over time, the granitic gneisses that underlie much of the ridge are weathered to form mineral-rich loamy soils. The rich underlying soil profiles carry through to the character of the wine. The network of streams that connects to the main arterial creek line of the Cowaramup Brook creates gently sloping vineyards with optimal drainage, and also results in the vineyards’ varying aspects (they face in different directions), which allows for optimal conditions to suit the different varieties. The proximity to the coast exposes the property to consistent fresh coastal breezes that ventilate and aerate the vines, as well as buffering temperatures to maintain a consistent range.

The People

Tim Quinlan
Viticulturist

Tim has been Grace Farm’s viticulturist since 2006. He worked as a botanist before moving to Margaret River and embarking on a career in the wine industry in 1994. He was mentored by renowned viticulturist John Brocksopp at Leeuwin Estate, where he learned to reference the grape-growing process with the end result in the bottle. This vine-to-wine principle and a close attention to detail underpin his work for Grace Farm.

Phoebe MacKinnon
Sales Manager

Phoebe is one of John and Elizabeth’s five children and has held the role of Sales Manager for Grace Farm since 2013. She studied Science and Commerce at the University of Western Australia and has since gained extensive sales and marketing experience across various industries. In 2014 she completed a trade specific course – Wine Essentials Plus at the Wine Industry Association of WA.

For all sales enquiries, please contact Phoebe at phoebe@gracefarm.com.au or +61 433 043 579.

Jonathan Mettam
Winemaker

Jono has been Grace Farm’s winemaker since the first vintage in 2010. He studied oenology at the University of Adelaide and honed his skills in the Mosel Valley in Germany, the Willamette Valley in the USA and WA’s Swan Valley. In 2003 he moved to the Margaret River region, working first for Wise Wines and then for 3 Oceans. He is relishing working with seasoned viticulturist Tim Quinlan and the pristine fruit from Grace Farm’s exceptional Wilyabrup site.

John Elizabeth Mair
Owners

John Mair studied at the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester, UK before arriving in Australia in 1961 under the so-called “Ten Pound Pom” immigration scheme. He worked as a jackaroo on properties in NSW and WA before settling in Perth and establishing a property business, now called the Mair Group. He met Elizabeth Lefroy in 1969 and they married in 1971, raising five children in Perth. The family spent their holidays in the South West, where a love of the region led to them purchasing the property that would become Grace Farm in 2003. As the first Grace Farm vintage came onto the market, Elizabeth took charge of the administrative side, handling orders, delivery and accounts. John has an active role in management and sales and can often be met at a tasting. They both work in the orchard and vegetable patch and enjoy maintaining the property’s bushland and natural assets with the help of their children.

Grace Farm

Grace Farm embraces organic principles and sustainable practices. Under the watchful eye of viticulturist Tim Quinlan, the vineyard blocks have been carefully matched to the appropriate grape varieties. This beautiful small vineyard with its distinctive forest grove soils and ideal topography is producing first-class fruit and wines for which the region is famous.

 

OWNERS : John Mair and Elizabeth Mair
WINEMAKERS : Jonathan Mettam
ESTABLISHED : 2006
VINEYARD LOCATION : 741 Cowaramup Bay Road, Gracetown
ANNUAL CRUSH : 50 tonnes
VARIETIES : Chardonnay, Semillon, Malbec, Petit Verdot, Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc

OPEN  : Tastings by appointment at the Farmhouse
WINE PRICES : $21 – 60
PHONE : 9384 4995 or 9755 9384
EMAIL : info@gracefarm.com.au
WEBSITE : www.gracefarm.com.au
DISTRIBUTION : Mail Order, Wholesaler, Online, Retail

Grace Farm sauvignon blanc semillon 2015 ($21)

Beautiful balance for these varieties from one of the best small producers in Margaret River. Passionfruit and other tropical notes with a lovely creaminess. There’s a dab of French oak in here adding to the texture and palate complexity. Simply superb drinking over the next couple of years.
SCORE 94/100 CELLAR 3 Years

Grace Farm chardonnay 2015 ($30)

An exquisitely presented chardonnay from this wonderful small producer. The nose has a lovely subtlety about it with a smoky background to the brioche and light stone fruit. The palate is delicate and beautifully crafted with a neat integration of fine French oak and medium-weight fruit. Some wild yeast influence is evident in both texture and complexity. Step forward for Grace Farm for this variety.
SCORE 94/100 CELLAR 6 years

Grace Farm cabernet sauvignon 2014 ($30)

Such varietal purity of cabernet. Black olive and blackcurrant aromas with a little chocolaty cedary oak influence. It’s a firm statement of the variety with a tight hold of tannin and oak creating a structure built for cellaring, yet allowing the sweet fruit to exhibit its best qualities.
SCORE 94/100 CELLAR 10 years

Grace Farm Reserve cabernet sauvignon 2013 ($50)

This is just so varietal, perfect for cabernet sauvignon. The bouquet of leafy black olive, cigar box and blackcurrant is classically varietal. The palate is concentrated and powerful, yet also so elegant and stylish. The oak and tannin combo is perfectly weighted and applied. Great wine and the best yet from this emerging producer.
SCORE 97/100 CELLAR 15 years

The Vineyards

The vineyard has the soils, topography and climatic conditions to produce the finest wines, according to Grace Farm viticulturist and vineyard manager, Tim Quinlan, who was involved in the initial soil-testing and feasibility phase. Each vineyard block has distinctive rock and soil characteristics which Tim carefully matched to the correct variety. He directed the owners in the planting of grapes for which the region is famous – chardonnay, sauvignon blanc, semillon, cabernet sauvignon and the blending varieties malbec, petit verdot and cabernet franc.

Wine Making Process

Grace Farm

741 Cowaramup Bay Road (corner of Caves Road), Gracetown Western Australia, 6284

CONTACT

Phone 9384 4995
info@gracefarm.com.au

Website

https://gracefarm.com.au/

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RAY'S WINE GUIDE 2017