Geographe wine region
The Geographe Wine Region faces Geographe Bay in the Indian Ocean of the south-west coast of Western Australia. The major commercial centre is the City of Bunbury, with other major towns being the Busselton, Capel, Collie and Donnybrook.
Under Australia's Geographic Indications system Geographe is an officially endorsed wine region of the South West Australia Zone.
To the north is the Peel Wine Region, to the south west is Margaret River, and to the south east, over the Darling Range is the Blackwood Valley wine region.
The unusual name for the Geographe region is worth a comment. The region takes its name from Geographe Bay which in turn is named after Le Geographe, a French ship which was a part of a scientific and geographic expedition in the early years of the 19th Century.
The climate is obviously influenced by the warm waters of the Indian Ocean. The main geographic feature of the region is the Darling Range which runs parallel to the coast and is dissected by a number of river valleys. This topography gives rise to a considerable number of soil types and microclimates, hence quite a variation in terroir.
The oldest and best known winery is Capel Vale which was established in the mid 1970s. Over the next few years other vineyards in the region were established, quite a few by larger WA wine producers who took the grapes for vinification elsewhere. Several of the grapegrowers in the region started keeping some fruit to make their own wine and thus new wineries were established. There are now over thirty wineries in the region.
Chenin blanc is a common variety throughout Western Australia and the variety is well represented in Geographe.
Angelicus Wines in this region are using Verdejo, the white variety from Rueda, Spain. It is quite distinct from the more widely planted Verdelho. Tempranillo, Barbera and Zinfandel are the most popular of the alternative red varieties.
Want to learn About Australian wine regions?
You can learn about the wine regions and the wineries in them in in James Halliday's Wine Atlas of Australia
This comprehensive book includes clear maps, notes on the climate, soils and history of each region as well as notes on the varieties used and wine styles along with a description of the iconic wineries in each region.
Alternative varieties in the Geographe wine Region
- Angelicus Grenache, Mourvedre, Tempranillo, Verdejo
- Bakkheia Graciano, Grenache, Mourvedre, Tempranillo
- Barrecas Barbera, Malbec, Pinotage, Sangiovese, Zinfandel
- Barton Jones Chenin blanc
- Brookhampton Estate Grenache, Tempranillo, Viognier
- Capel Vale Chenin blanc, Nebbiolo, Petit verdot, Sangiovese, Tempranillo, Verdelho, Viognier
- Carlaminda Estate Chenin blanc, Nebbiolo, Tempranillo, Viognier
- Ferguson Falls Winery Tempranillo, Nebbiolo
- Fifth Estate Tempranillo
- Geographe Wines Nebbiolo, Sangiovese, Tempranillo
- Hackersley Mondeuse, Petit verdot, Verdelho
- Harris River Estate Verdelho, Viognier
- Mandalay Road Durif, Moscato, Zinfandel
- Mazza Bastardo, Graciano, Sousao, Tempranillo, Tinto Cao, Touriga
- Myalup Wines Chenin blanc
- Oakway Estate Moscato, Viognier
- Pepperilly Estate Wines Grenache, Mourvedre, Viognier
- Smallwater Estate Zinfandel
- Talisman Wines Malbec, Zinfandel
- Thomson Brook Wines Barbera, Verdelho
- Vasse River Wines Tempranillo, Verdelho
- Vineyard 28 Arneis, Chenin blanc, Moscato, Nebbiolo
- Whicher Ridge Viognier
- Willow Bridge Estate Chenin blanc, Tempranillo, Viognier
- Wordsworth Wines Chenin blanc, Petit verdot, Verdelho, Zinfandel
- Wovenfield Tempranillo, Viognier, Verdelho
- Yokain Vineyard Estate Verdelho, Zinfandel
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