About Xanadu

HISTORY & HERITAGE

THE BEGINNING

Situated only four kilometres from the town centre of Margaret River and an equal distance from the magnificent coastline, Xanadu is a true pioneer of the region with a long history of producing wines with distinct character that embody all that is the Margaret River.

Xanadu was established by Dr John Lagan, an Irishman, who arrived in Margaret River in 1968 and was inspired by the pioneering spirit of the region. At the time, the potential of Margaret River as one of the world’s finest wine-producing regions was only just being considered. So less than a decade on, Dr Lagan with his wife Eithne established one of the region’s earlier vineyards, planting his first vines in 1977.

Lovers of literature will remember Xanadu as Samuel Coleridge’s mysterious, idyllic, exotic city; home of Kubla Khan. Dr Lagan, himself a great literature enthusiast, drew parallels between Coleridge’s visions of utopia and his newly adopted home, and thus the name Xanadu was born.

True to its poetic namesake, Xanadu is in an idyllic setting where the now 65 hectares of vines on the original estate flourish in the rich, free draining gravel soils of the Margaret River region. In this unique maritime climate enjoys an abundant supply of water and is sheltered by forests of magnificent marri trees.

MODERN

Success brought expansion. Over the last 40 years there has been a major investment in modern winemaking technology. Also a state of the art restaurant and cellar door has been constructed, with the extensive use of local granite and gneissic rocks, excavated during the planting of the original vineyard. This expansion eventually culminated in Xanadu being listed on the ASX in 2001.

After their success at Yering Station and Mount Langi Ghiran, the Rathbone family looked to expand into Margaret River. Recognising Margaret River as one of the great regions of Australia, and in particular Darren Rathbone’s love for Cabernet Sauvignon was the original reason for them exploring this region. The potential of Xanadu was recognized as having the combination of great viticulture, great wine making facilities and great tourism facilities. In 2005 the Rathbone family purchased Xanadu Wines.

TODAY

The clear direction under Rathbone ownership was to focus on quality. Winemaker Glenn Goodall joined Xanadu in 1999 and took on the role of Senior Winemaker in early 2005. His passion and dedication for the vineyards and the wines, and a commitment to encouraging a strong team spirit, has allowed Xanadu to thrive. Glenn considers his role is often more about being the custodian of the vineyards, and what the individual sites have to offer. His philosophy is to guide the wines through to the bottle, rather than ‘beating them into submission’.

Xanadu continues to be a family owned and operated winery dedicated to producing wines of quality and distinction that reflect the true characteristics of the Margaret River region. This has been highlighted by the numerous trophies and accolades Xanadu has been awarded, including James Halliday’s Wine of the Year in 2014.

WINEMAKERS

DARREN RATHBONE

CEO

Dividing his time between Yering Station, Mount Langi Ghiran and Xanadu Wines, Darren is the CEO and Group Chief Winemaker, involved in the day to day running of the Rathbone Wine Group.

After graduating from Chemical Engineering at Melbourne University in 1995, Darren started work in the wine industry, planting the Laura Barnes vineyard in the Yarra Valley. The Rathbone family purchased Yering Station in 1996 and Darren began planning the new winery and tourism complex.

In this time, Darren travelled to Champagne Devaux and spent time working with Devaux’s head winemaker Claude Thibaut. Here he acquired knowledge of the traditional Champagne making method and determined the design of equipment for producing ‘Yarrabank’, the joint venture with Devaux at Yering Station. Yering Station’s first vintage in the new winery in 1997 was Darren’s first winemaking experience in Australia.

In 2001, Darren received his Masters of Food and Science from the internationally recognised wine school UC Davis in California. After finishing the Masters program, Darren travelled to Burgundy, working at Domain Moreau in Chassagne Montrachet, in the Cote de Beaune and assisting in the production of the 2001 vintage.

Darren returned to Australia and Yering Station in December of 2001. In 2002, he and his father Doug developed the strategy of developing a portfolio of high quality complementary wineries, which would become The Rathbone Wine Group. The first opportunity that was acted on was Mount Langi Ghiran in 2002 and then Xanadu in 2005. Darren played an active role in assessing and implementing the acquisitions, integrating each new winery into the group, and setting the direction and quality focus in the vineyard, winery and market.

In 2010, Darren was accepted into the Masters of Business Administration program at Melbourne Business School, and completed his MBA in 2011.

Darren continues to play an active role in all aspect of the business in the Rathbone Wine Group

BRENDAN CARR

Winemaker

Hailing from the South-West of WA, Brendan has always held Margaret River close to his heart. Coming from the country, and having a passion of surfing, for Brendan living and working in the Margaret River region was a natural decision. Yet, he soon realised that his less than impressive surfing skills of the famous barrels of Margaret River wouldn’t suffice as a career path alone, so he decided to turn his attention to barrels of wine instead.

Whilst studying at the Curtin University at Margaret River, Brendan gained invaluable experience working for local wineries Forester Estate and Deep Woods. However, it wasn’t long before Brendan wanted to spread his wings. He didn’t even wait to finish his course, completing an exchange program with Lincoln University in Canterbury on New Zealand’s south island. With a new outlook on study, coupled with a vintage making Pinot Noir and Riesling at a local winery, his passion to travel was fuelled further abroad into the world of wine.

And so his path as a travelling winemaker was forged. Vintages at Chateau Guiot in the Southern Rhone Valley, Church and State in Canada’s Okanagan Valley, Polkura in the Colchagua Valley, Chile and Kreinbacher in the Somlo wine region of Hungary have been instrumental in gaining experience into the different winemaking and viticulture techniques from both the old and new world.

In amongst this travel, Brendan worked at Xanadu in 2010 as a vintage cellar-hand. He was lured back by the lifestyle and wine to join the Xanadu winemaking team full time before the vintage of 2012. Now over three years down the track he couldn’t be happier to be a part of a great team, helping make great wines, in one of the greatest little corners of the world.

TODAY

The clear direction under Rathbone ownership was to focus on quality. Winemaker Glenn Goodall joined Xanadu in 1999 and took on the role of Senior Winemaker in early 2005. His passion and dedication for the vineyards and the wines, and a commitment to encouraging a strong team spirit, has allowed Xanadu to thrive. Glenn considers his role is often more about being the custodian of the vineyards, and what the individual sites have to offer. His philosophy is to guide the wines through to the bottle, rather than ‘beating them into submission’.

Xanadu continues to be a family owned and operated winery dedicated to producing wines of quality and distinction that reflect the true characteristics of the Margaret River region. This has been highlighted by the numerous trophies and accolades Xanadu has been awarded, including James Halliday’s Wine of the Year in 2014.

VITICULTURE

LAGAN ESTATE

Lagan Estate is located on the Xanadu property and was first planted in 1977 by Dr John Lagan, an Irishman that arrived in Margaret River nearly a decade earlier. The original varieties planted includes Cabernet Sauvignon and Semillon, closely followed by Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, Cabernet Franc and Merlot. Lagan Estate is a relatively flat site, with the vines rooted in a deep clay/sandy loam soil over deep gravel. The vines use vertical shoot positioning trellising and has a total of 17 hectares under vine.

Our most revered variety from Lagan Estate is the Chardonnay which has produced Xanadu’s Reserve wine each year. From original 1981 plantings, the low yielding Chardonnay produces a powerful and robust style of wine, with all the hallmarks of Margaret River fruit intensity.

BOODJIDUP ESTATE

The Boodjidup Estate is our newest addition to Xanadu and is located next to the Lagan Estate, expanding out onto Boodjidup and Exmoor Drives. This vineyard was planted in 1999, where the standout varietal is 23 hectares of Cabernet Sauvignon. Our Cabernet Sauvignon performs on our north / south and east / west orientated rows and these make up the back bone of our premium Cabernet Sauvignon. We utilise a variety of canopy management techniques to achieve these fine wines. Other notable varieties in the Boodjidup plantings are Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon and Shiraz. The total size of the Boodjidup plantings is 47 hectares.

STEVENS ROAD

The Stevens Road vineyard was first planted in 1989. Being only 3km from Xanadu winery, the vineyard is also located within the Wallcliffe sub region. With 24 hectares under vine the block is a gracious host to many varieties such as Chardonnay, Petit Verdot, Malbec, Merlot, Shiraz Muscadelle, Graciano and Cabernet Sauvignon. The Boodjidup Brook weaves it way through the undulating property which gives rise to multiple aspects throughout the vineyard.

The soils on the Stevens road vineyard are shallow sandy loams over deep well drained gravel. These soils are conducive to the well balanced vines which are in the Boodjidup Brook catchment on Stevens Road.

The two stellar varietals to come off this vineyard include both the Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon. The Chardonnay from Block 2 offers a wonderful minerality, and tightly coiled style. This block is planted with an easterly aspect, and is just 10 metres from the Stevens roadside. The vines are well balanced, with very low vigour and there is also an underground stream meandering through the block. This mystical site produces the grapes that nearly always make up our single vineyard Stevens Road Chardonnay.

The Cabernet Sauvignon comes from 21 rows of Houghton clone Cabernet and the block has an easterly aspect with north-south row orientation, and is situated on free draining gravelly-loam soils. The vines are cane pruned, have a naturally low-moderate vigour and yields have tended to settle at around 5 – 6 tonnes per hectare in recent years. It’s a block that just always seems to know its own balance. In 2010, we took cuttings of this Cabernet block and in 2011 we planted another 4 hectares. This time on the South side of the Boodjidup creek, on an exceptionally hilly site, with north / south rows, over beautifully orange gravels, with granite influences. This block is now online and although young at this point in time, it is already producing an amazing wine.

The wines to come out of the Stevens Road blocks are a true testament to the statement ‘quality not quantity’ as production remains quite limited for the wines under the Stevens Road label. James Halliday recently named the 2011 Cabernet Sauvignon Wine of the Year, awarding it 99 points.

SUZIE MUNTZ

Viticulturist

Suzie began her work with Xanadu 6 years ago as the Vineyard Supervisor. It was here where Suzie discovered her passion for growing Wine Grapes.
A country girl, growing up in the small town of Corrigan, Suzie could regularly be found outdoors indulging her natural curiosity for ‘growing things’. A long with a taste for good food and wine it was no surprise when Suzie decided to study Agricultural Science at the University of Western Australia, majoring in plant and soil science.

Like so many in the wine industry, Suzie’s passion for her work took her abroad, where she gained invaluable experience in Ontario, Canada and Kauai, Hawaii to name a few. However, Suzie missed her Australian roots, friends and family and decided to move to Margaret River to pursue a career in viticulture and the wine industry.

Her career in the south west of Western Australia has seen her be an Agronomist for Biofusion Farming, the Technical Officer for 11 vineyards across the SW and Great Southern. Living in the Margaret River Region and having a keen interest in visiting the local vineyards and wineries, and enrolling herself into Wine Evaluation courses then led her into working as a Cellar Hand for nearly a year. After getting a taste of Winemaking so to speak, it was at this point that Suzie decided to apply for the Vineyard Supervisor position at Xanadu Wines.

After 6 years Suzie has proven herself as an enthusiastic team player and has recently taken on the role as Viticlurist. Darren Rathbone jokes that Suzie is the only person he knows that sat in her first interview for Xanadu Wines and told her current boss that she saw herself taking his job in the future!

Wine Making Process

Cellar Door

Boodjidup Rd
Margaret River
Western Australia, 6285

CONTACT

Phone 9758 9500
info@xanaduwines.com

Website

www.xanaduwines.com/

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Boodjidup Rd, Margaret River, Western Australia, 6285

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RAY'S WINE GUIDE 2017