Mezzanine The Fine Wine Specialist
1 June 2023 | Mezzanine The Fine Wine Specialist

100 Years of Diana Madeline

2021 vintage marks the 50th year of plantings for cabernet sauvignon at the Cullen Wilyabrup vineyard. Serendipity allows it also to be Diana Madeline’s 100th year, beginning on 11th February 2023. It’s incredible to imagine the times of planting in 1971, with no real knowledge of how things would turn out, just faith and great vision to feed the early pioneers of what is now the iconic Margaret River region.

Born February 11, 1923, Diana Madeline was a trailblazer, studying physiotherapy when tertiary education was out of reach for most women; lobbying to protect Tasmania’s Lake Pedder and the Margaret River Coastline. Growing up surrounded by Tasmania’s wild beauty, Diana’s commitment to environmental sustainability came long before winemaking. Diana was the beating heart of Cullen Wines, working hands-on for many decades. She planted the vineyard, made the wine, and was even the first woman to win a Wine Trophy at Perth Royal Wine Awards for her Sauvignon Blanc.

Diana Madeline 1940s

Diana Madeline and Kevin Cullen


Kevin and Diana travelled extensively throughout the world’s most renowned wine regions to discover and learn how to make exceptional Chardonnay and Cabernet. Their dedication to producing world class wines cemented the reputation of Cullen and the Margaret River region on the world wine map.
With Vanya’s natural progression to winemaking, she kept Diana’s dream alive by steering Cullen’s towards organics. After Diana’s passing in 2003, Vanya introduced the idea of bio-dynamics—achieving certification in both. Cullen Wines, a family-owned business, is now globally respected, carbon-positive, and producing world-class biodynamic wine—this is Diana’s enduring legacy.


A note from Vanya Cullen

Diana Madeline Cullen was gentle, generous and deeply compassionate – a forward thinker loved by all who met her. In February 2023, we will celebrate what would have been Diana's 100th birthday, raising a glass of her beloved Cabernet Sauvignon—Family Blend' Diana Madeline' in her memory.

Diana studied Physiotherapy when university education was out of reach for most women, even travelling to Paris to further her training. She lobbied to protect Tasmania's Lake Pedder and the Margaret River coastline and was the first woman in Busselton to wear trousers! She had the amazing ability to give her undivided attention to whomever she was with—making you feel like the most important person in the world.

Diana had six children and gave us a wonderful outdoors, nature-based childhood, always at the beach or working on the farm. She instilled in us the belief that we could achieve anything.

She helped plant Cullen's first rows of Cabernet and Riesling in 1971, later taking on the winemaking responsibilities and initiating the move towards organic and biodynamic practices. Cullen Wines, a family-owned business, is now globally respected, carbon-positive, and producing world-class biodynamic wine—this is Diana's enduring legacy.

As we toast her memory, I'd love to share Diana and Kevin's vision—to make great wine sustainably.

Thank you for taking part in the Cullen journey.

-Vanya Cullen
January 2023

Diana Madeline and Vanya Cullen



The recently released 2021 vintage of Cullen’s Diana Madeline is a testament to the vision and legacy of this pioneer of Margaret River, and the continued devotion to world class wine by Vanya Cullen and the dedicated teams at Cullen Wines.
This wine is the culmination of over 50 years of dedication effort and respect
for the land. The quest for better quality wine made using sustainable methods. The region is going from strength to strength on a national and international stage.

Cullen Diana Madeline 2021

Wilyabrup, WA

"A wine worthy of the occasion; complex but cohesive.”  97/100 Windsor Dobbin.

“This will surely be one of the top wines of the year, even at this early stage.”  98/100 Ken Gargett.

“Impressive off the bat.”  96+/100 Paul Edwards 




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