Women Pioneers in Wine

Trailblazing women and the wine they made famous


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Diana and Vanya Cullen

One of the original vineyards in the Margaret River region of Western Australia, the Cullen estate was influential in establishing this region as a quality wine-producing area during the 1960s. Diana and her husband, who together founded the estate, experimented with different varietals during the first few years. Leaving her career in physiotherapy, she became the full-time winemaker. During her first year, Cullen won a trophy at the Perth Royal Wine Show, the first woman to do so. Eventually, her daughter Vanya went on to take over the production duties, earning ever-more awards and recognition for her family’s estate.
 

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Comments

  • Great story, though I was surprised not to see, among these amazing women, any mention of the eminently amazing Chiara Lungarotti and Teresa Severini of Lungarotti winery, Torgiano, Umbria.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 1:11 PM


  • Snooth User: Ozrr
    184260 9

    Clarification: Zelma Long was one of the first women to study enology and viticulture at U.C. Davis when she enrolled for her Master's studies in '68, not one of the first women to attend UC Davis. UCD was a coed campus at the time Zelma enrolled.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 1:40 PM


  • Snooth User: syoung51
    176730 5

    Alessia, Albiera and Allegra Antinori might be worth mentioning - they have advanced the family name beyond all expectations!!!

    Mar 14, 2012 at 2:07 PM


  • Snooth User: dmcker
    Hand of Snooth
    125836 7,121

    You should've included Anne Gros in Burgundy and the Minervois, too. Many others could be named but she should be pretty high up the list.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 3:18 PM


  • I'm beginning to see how daunting a task Ms. Zapel was up against, reducing to a workable size the list of so many eminent women in wine. Good work, in any case.

    Mar 14, 2012 at 3:26 PM


  • I would like to add Patrizia Lamborghini's name to this list. She inherited her father, Ferruccio Lamborghini's winery in Umbria after he passed away and took it to a whole new level. She brought in Dr Riccardo Cotarella, one of Europe's top enologists and completely redid the vineyards, replacing the white varietals with Sangiovese and Merlot. She making only red wines now, some of the best in the region.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 5:44 PM


  • Seems to me that an article might be written solely on the women of Italian wine.

    Mar 15, 2012 at 7:45 PM


  • Snooth User: chiefpace
    274075 2

    I think that Colette, Catherine and Laurence Faller of Domaine Weinbach deserve a mention. Not only for producing a remarkable Reisling but for keeping the winery in the family after the death of Colette's husband Theo. They have improved the winery and produce a great line of wine. I had the Grand Cru Schlossberg at the Inn at Little Washington and fell immediately in love with it.

    Mar 16, 2012 at 6:37 PM


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