Our wine is made with intense product focus by passionate winemakers and viticulturists who share a strong commitment to environmental sustainability.
The winemaking facility conducts it's business in a manner that recognises the importance of environmental protection, sustainability and quality of wines. We are committed to minimising environmental impacts in all our operations. We strive to improve on ecological efficiency by exploring and challenging cleaner production methods; and to conduct ourselves using best practices in winegrowing which are environmentally sustainable.
Bruce Dukes (Senior Winemaker and Director of Naturaliste Vintners) was appointed as winemaker to Knee Deep Wines following the 2012 vintage. Bruce enjoys working and collaborating with vignerons Phil and Sue Childs, and our Viticulturists in the pursuit of greatness in wine.
Bruce has more than twenty five years of valuable postgraduate industry experience, shared between iconic producers. He has assisted in the establishment of several "five star" producers in the Margaret River area. He currently prefers to focus on hands-on winemaking and viticultural consulting. The viticultural consulting is biased toward fine-tuning vineyards to ensure that the fruit is farmed to suit the intended wine-style. His deep technical and applied understanding of viticulture, and how viticultural parameters affect wine quality result in very high quality wines and meaningful feed back to vignerons.
Bruce Dukes was awarded West Australian Winemaker of the Year 2011-2012. Naturaliste Vintners was awarded as the "Best Winemaking Facility in Western Australia" by the Wine Industry Association of Western Australia.
His approach to grape growing and winemaking has been shaped by a wide range of high quality industry experience, in conjunction with a degree in Agricultural Science from the University of Western Australia, and a Masters degree in Viticulture and Enology from the University of California, Davis. Bruce has several publications in referred scientific journals, as well as recently having authored a chapter in a winemaking text-book.
Remi Guise (winemaker Naturaliste Vintners) was born in Cape Province South Africa. Remi completed a BSc. (Agric.) (Viticulture & Oenology) in 2006 at the University of Stellenbosch and then took up a position as Assistant Winemaker at the Meerendal Wine Estate in Durbanville, a 300 year old estate producing quality wines in South Africa. Remi joined Naturaliste Vintners in 2008, was promoted to Red Wine Specialist in 2009, Operations Winemaker in 2012 and now Winemaker after 6 years with Naturalist Vintners. Remi is passionate about New World winemaking and wines for their ability to equal or surpass their Old World counterparts in both quality and integrity, and to have an identity which is an expression of the New World and all it has to offer.
Bob Cartwright has been consultant winemaker to Knee Deep Wines finishing this role with the 2012 vintage. He brought a wealth of experience to the role. After 28 vintages as winemaker at Leeuwin Estate in Margaret River, Bob has produced consistently exceptional wines that have been attracting international recognition.
Our viticulturists rigorously maintain the health of the soil and the vines to ensure premium quality fruit is harvested at the optimum time and delivered to the winery. They adopt sustainable practices within the vineyard which include: open solarised canopies taking advantage of UV light to discourage disease and allow for good spray penetration to the canopy; most of the sprays used are elemental suplfur and copper; mixed clover grass swards grown between rows allowing for nitrogen fixation by clovers, and deep placement of organic matter by the grass roots; minimum till systems which build soil health; and alternate slashing of rows to allow insect population to re-equilibrate.
Jim Campbell Clause (BSc (Ag Hon)) & Colin Bell (Assoc. Deg. App. Sc. (Winegrowing), Trade Hort., Cert. 3 Food Proc.(Wine)) from AHA Viticulture, oversee the Knee Deep vineyard and work with our winemakers to capture the essence of our region and terroir in the fruit produced. Their expertise was used to select the block and make the first plantings from the commencement in 2000. Their team of experienced vineyard operators and their own technical and management skills ensure the vineyard produces consistant quality fruit around each set of seasonal conditions. Their experience and knowledge of the region ensures timely vineyard operations when climatic fluctuations could potentially create vine health issues. This has ensured quality disease free fruit from healthy well nourished vines.