About Voyager Estate

Michael’s Vision

150 years of farming underpin my family’s dedication to Voyager Estate. Our viticulture and winemaking bring everything I love about agriculture together in one enterprise.

I settled on our special site in Stevens Valley because it had the ideal characteristics to create wines that are at home amongst the world’s best. Its geology is the oldest in Australia and the gravel soils, microclimate, aspect and consistent maritime influence make up the foundations of the distinctive Voyager Estate style.

The final step in the journey is the best – inviting everyone to come and enjoy a glass with us in Margaret River. The perfect combination of food, wine and the warmth of family and friends is what a visit to Voyager Estate is about. From the flawless Cape Dutch architecture and stunning gardens, to the spectacular Wine Room and award-winning Restaurant, every feature of the Estate is designed to give you an inspirational experience.

Michael Wright, Founder
1937 – 2012

Protecting our little part of the world

Voyager Estate lives in a very special part of the world. Our patch of land is our blood, our bones, our muscle and our heart. Without it, our vines, wines and reason for being do not exist. It is, therefore, second nature to us to put our environment front and centre in all our decisions about how we do what we do.

Our objective is to achieve environmental balance. To us, this means becoming a wholly-sustainable enterprise. Having started on this dedicated environmental journey in 2004, we continue to learn both through hands on experience and through reviewing the science as it develops.

Sustainable Farming

A natural farming approach to vineyard management with a focus on building a healthy and resilient vineyard through the use of natural products and encouraging biodiversity. This helps maintain balance in our ecosystem, ensuring sustainability for generations to come.

Cover crops, like the planting of Crimson Clover, is one way we can add nutrients to the soil in a natural way.

Our Stewards

Our efforts are led by the Environmental Stewardship Team (EST), which brings together representatives from every part of the business so that not only that our existing environmental standards preserved, but that we also are continually researching and developing new initiatives that put us at the forefront of environmental best practice. They help us focus on more than just the growing and making of wine. Our Wine Room, Restaurant, gardens, marketing and administration aim for balance too, taking responsibility for the resources they consume and the waste they produce.

We are proud of our Entwine Australia accreditation, an industry-based sustainability accreditation covering all aspects of winery production, hospitality, administration and marketing.

Great Wine is made in the vineyard

We are meticulous in everything we do: from site, varietal and clonal selection to vineyard management and winemaking. A combination of traditional methods, sustainable principles and the latest in technology create the ultimate balance for our vineyards and soils. We take an individual approach to each and every vineyard block on our Estate. At every step of the way, we work with the ‘big picture’ in mind, acknowledging the characters that each block will contribute to the final wines.

‘Hands on’ Management

We follow an intensive “hands on” vine management program in our vineyard – from hand pruning, shoot thinning, yield thinning and green thinning – everything is done meticulously, with great attention to detail.

Sustainable Farming

We follow a sustainable farming approach to our viticulture. We endeavor to keep things as natural as possible and focus on building a healthy and resilient vineyard through the use of natural products, building healthy soils and encouraging bio diversity such as ‘good bugs’ and cover crops. The “minimal input” methods that we use to nurture our soils, forces our vines to develop a stronger and deeper root system resulting in tougher more resilient vines that in turn produce grapes with thicker skins. This means the fruit is more naturally resistant to disease and displays added layers of flavour, complexity and vibrancy.

Climate

We are blessed with ideal climatic conditions; moderate temperatures with extremes of heat or cold; good rainfall between May and October; a dry growing and harvest period; plenty of sunshine during the ripening period but with cool evenings that helps with fruit flavour development and fresh acidity and sea breezes with the prevailing south westerly off the Indian Ocean acting like a giant air conditioner for our vineyards.

Uniformity

Within each of our vineyard blocks we aim to achieve uniformity, meaning every vine within a specific block will have the same number of buds at pruning, the same number of shoots and the same number of bunches. The reason we are obsessed with uniformity is because it is a key driver of exceptional quality. If the grapes are able to ripen in unison, the parcels of fruit that are finally delivered to the winery will be exceptionally pure expressions of each block at optimal ripeness.

Five Vineyards

The original 1978 plantings are found on our Estate Block which surrounds our Cellar Door and winery but Michael Wright recognised the viticultural value of the surrounding land. The five vineyards of Voyager Estate are all adjoining properties, and while each have their own nuances, they are all planted on well drained gravelly soils which produce fruit with purity, structure and balance.

Team Effort

Throughout the growing season, our winemakers and viticulturists work together to make sure that creating an exceptional wine is the common and achievable goal. There is an excellent level of understanding of the nuances of different vineyard blocks and selective harvesting for wine quality is carried out as required. Our decisions on harvest are based on extensive time spent in the field tasting the fruit rather than conducting juice analysis in the laboratory.

The maturity of the vineyard is beginning to produce some truly outstanding parcels of fruit which are recognised and valued by the team.

Striving for Balance, Elegance and Complexity

Our meticulous approach in the vineyard continues in the winery, with sensitive winemaking techniques allowing the wines to express a sense of place without other influences dominating. These techniques have been at the heart of the Voyager Estate winemaking philosophy for more than 20 years. It is for this reason that we have been able to forge a reputation for balanced, elegant, subtle wines of great character and with a sense of place that is uniquely southern Margaret RIver.

oak

We use very high quality, predominantly tight-grained French oak. Our aim is for the oak to offer structure and complexity to the wine and support the full expression of the vineyard site, rather than assert its own characteristics in the wine. Again, this is about balance. (download MAGNUM 28 article)

Fruit Care

Sensitive handling of the fruit includes hand harvesting, individually sorting and whole bunch pressing Chardonnay.

We use a sorting table to hand-sort red fruit. This involes removing leaves, stalks and other materials to ensure that only fruit enters the fermentation vessel. Keeping the Cabernet at 28 degrees during this process preserves the fruit-freshness.

Fermentation

We use wild yeast in Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc to create complexity and texture, resulting in wines with more interesting characters and flavours. We only use the gently pressed juice from the white grapes for our Estate wines, resulting in finer, more elegant wines.

Constantly challenging ourselves, constantly learning

The team constantly has trials taking place in the vineyard and winery, with many taking several years to give us enough data to make informed decisions on their outcomes. These trials are vital to our ongoing understanding of our vineyards’ capabilities, climate change, clonal mix and future plantings. The information we learn will help us safeguard our future.

Clonal research

The use and understanding of different clones has been a key driver of wine quality for us. For example, we have nine different Chardonnay clones planted, each of which offers subtle characters to the wine. We are currently researching and trialling some superior Merlot clones and are particularly excited by their potential of Q45 and Clone 181, both of which hold great promise for improvements in purity of flavour and overall wine quality.

Heritage Project

We have planted the first Cabernet Sauvignon cuttings, cloned from the best performing vines in our superior Old Block. Over three years, we extensively tested each vine to find a few to be used as ‘mother vines’ for future vineyard growth. It makes sense to clone the old generation because these vines have already proven to marry with our current climatic conditions and soils. (download MAGNUM article)

Changing Climate

We are now harvesting our grapes 3-4 weeks earlier than 15 years ago. Our trials help fast track our learning around changing climatic conditions to find ways to manage evolving seasonal conditions. One trial that was started in 2015 was to erect shade sails as sun and wind protection on Sauvignon Blanc to see the effects on ripening and fruit quality.

Good food, Good wine, Good company

Making great wine is just the beginning. To experience wine at its best you need to add beautiful food and share the meal with good company. So we design our menus with this in mind, aiming to reflect the perfect marriage between food and wine.  Being able to source produce each morning from our garden inspires the chefs with their daily menu creation.  You can’t get fresher than that.

Discovery Menu

Wine has always been the hero in our Restaurant. Our Discovery Menus bring together the creativity and skills of our chefs, winemakers and sommerlier with a wine-paired menu that saims to share aspects of our Estate with our guests.

We want our menus to be more than just lunch.  We want your meal to be a unique dining experience that allows our team to share our story with you.  To book, visit our Restaurant page.

Kitchen Garden

Planted in November 2014, our kitchen garden has rapidly changed the way our chefs design their daily menu.

Our chefs and gardeners collaborate on planning the season’s plantings to ensure a constant variety of vegetables and herbs, picked daily when at their optimum ripeness. Within six months, the garden was supplying 90% of the vegetables used in our Discovery Menu.

Drink less. Drink better.

We are a proud to be an ambassador winery for the Responsible Winery Initiative, being championed by Winemakers’ Federation of Australia. Encouraging consumers to drink alcohol responsibly has always been important to us. We want our guests to enjoy wine safely so we are committed to Responsible Service of Alcohol requirements.  We will not serve wine to anyone under 18 years of age, and if we ask for identification, please take it as a compliment.  Parents, this extends to you offering your child a taste, which is not allowed under RSA guidelines.

Our promise to our customers is summarised in our House Management Policy.

We are also proud to offer our non-alcoholic Sparkling Grape Juice as an alternative. This refreshing drink is the creation of our late founder, Michael Wright, who was particularly fond of enjoying the fruits of Voyager Estate in a non-alcoholic form. Find out more about our Sparkling Grape Juice.

For information on wine and health issues, we can recommend bewinewise.org.au

Voyager Estate

With vineyards established in 1978, Voyager Estate has the raw materials required to make great wine. From this strong foundation, the vineyard and winemaking team led by Steve James apply their craft and uncompromising passion to create elegant wines that do justice to their place in Margaret River.

OWNERS : Alex Burt and Leonie Baldock
WINEMAKERS : Steve James and Travis Lemm
ESTABLISHED : 1978
VINEYARD LOCATION : Margaret River
ANNUAL CRUSH : 600 tonnes
VARIETIES : Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Semillon, Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Petit Verdot, Chenin Blanc

CELLAR DOOR : Lot 1 Stevens Road, Margaret River
OPEN : Monday – Sunday, 10am – 5pm
WINE PRICES : $20 – 180
PHONE : 9757 6354
EMAIL : wineroom@voyagerestate.com.au
WEBSITE : www.voyagerestate.com.au
DISTRIBUTION : Cellar Door, Retail, Mail Order, Wholesaler, Online


Voyager Estate Girt by Sea chardonnay 2016 ($28)

A lighter, early drinking young chardonnay displaying some subtle deceptive complexities. Nutty stone fruit and grapefruit citrus characters. The palate has an appealing vanillin influence with a gentle nougat richness. A little dab of oak completes a well-made wine for the next few years
SCORE 91/100 CELLAR 4 Years

Voyager Estate chardonnay 2015 ($45)

Chardonnay has been a significant focus for Voyager, with new clones and block selection designed to create great complexity and style in the wines. This is one of the best. Surprising that the new oak is up at 40 per cent, because it is so well balanced and weighted you are not even conscious of the oak influence. An elegant and precise wine with some cellaring potential.
SCORE 96/100 CELLAR 8 years

Voyager Estate Tom Price chardonnay 2014 ($110)

A new super premium release honouring the man who put together the business consortium that became Hammersley Iron, from which the extraordinary wealth of Voyager’s founder Michael Wright stemmed. It is somewhat difficult to reconcile that the wonderful elegant and refined chardonnay has a link to the harsh environs of the North West of the state. The wine itself is a beautifully expressed chardonnay based on restraint and poise. It is a modern statement that works so well
SCORE 97/100 CELLAR 10 years

Voyager Estate Girt by Sea cabernet merlot 2014 ($28)

Clearly one of the best examples of this wine yet released. Obviously, a great vintage has helped, but there is a quality and refinement that is the outcome of logical evolution. Medium-bodied, elegantly structured blend. The palate is impressive with a perfect balance of fruit oak and tannin. Neat mix of blackcurrant cab with deep fruit cake and chocolate characters. It’s seamless and smooth.
SCORE 93/100 CELLAR 7 years

Voyager Estate cabernet sauvignon merlot 2013 ($70)

Cabernet dominant with smaller percentages of merlot and petit verdot. A most impressive cabernet that captures both style and substance in its powerful frame, delivering it with deft control and poise. The driving palate is extraordinarily powerful and defined though to its very long finish. Outstanding wine that will cellar for many years.
SCORE 96/100 CELLAR 20 years

Voyager Estate cabernet merlot 2012 ($70)

This is simply one of the best releases from Voyager. The mature vines and a very good vintage have combined to produce something special. Medium to full bodied with elegance and charm oozing from the very long palate. Fine grained oak is well managed and the fully ripe tannins are slightly sinewy to add a sense of purpose and structure.
SCORE 96/100 CELLAR 20 years

Voyager Estate Tom Price cabernet sauvignon 2012 ($180)

Another new wine honouring the man behind the creation of the Hamersley Iron mining house. It is a remarkable wine showing such classic cabernet definition and structural poise. There is an almost bony sinewy thread running deep. The mix of tobacco leaf, cigar box and savoury blackcurrant and edgy black olive is so compelling. This is serious stuff for the serious cabernet buff.
SCORE 97/100 CELLAR 25 years

Wine Making Process

Cellar Door

Stevens Road
Margaret River
Western Australia, 6285

CONTACT

Phone 9757 6354
wineroom@voyagerestate.com.au

Website

www.voyagerestate.com.au

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RAY'S WINE GUIDE 2017