Blind Corner, Margaret River, Australia
Though the Margaret River is no stranger to conscientious farming (the Cullen family has been farming biodynamically here for decades), Ben and Naomi were the first of the region to combine ethical farming with minimal intervention in the cellar, using native yeasts, dialing back sulfur levels (none added, for their pet-nats), and introducing chickens, bugs and bees to their vineyards, becoming an important piece of their farming techniques. Ben and Naomi have created biodiversity on their land and a permaculture where their children could crawl in the dirt, picking fruit from the vines and playing in the vegetable patches lining the vineyards.
The Gould family now owns and farms two properties, their original vineyard in Wilyabrup which they began farming in 2005, converting it to dry farmed and biodynamically certified, and their second bigger property in Quindalup which they purchased in 2015. As of 2018 this property will be certified biodynamic as well (no small feat in Australia!). Olive groves, veggie patches, 15 bee hives, and hundreds of chickens who roost happily in a rainbow painted caravan are all scattered between and around the rows of Chardonnay, Shiraz, Cabernet, Sauvignon Blanc and Chenin Blanc. They are even starting a biodiesel plant on the property to convert spent vegetable oil into fuel for their winery equipment (of which there isn’t much, as they don’t pump, filter, or otherwise manipulate their wines).