I’ve been a huge fan of Rockcliffe since attending a wine dinner at Jezebelle in Guildford back in 2013. It’s no surprise I fell head over heels in love with their Chardonnay. The lasting impressions of the dinner were the reason why I just HAD to visit the Rockcliffe cellar door on my recent trip to Denmark in the Great Southern wine region of WA. And did it live up to my expectations? Read on to find out…
I was really hoping to dine at their onsite restaurant, Petite Villaine which is a completely gluten-free venue however time escaped us on this trip unfortunately so we didn’t have a chance to eat there. However we did have a lovely tasting at the cellar door instead.
Rockcliffe is a pretty vineyard on a slightly sloping hill. The cellar door is nice and open with fabulous local artwork decorating the area and I have to admit it was nice to sit on the stools at the high bar in the cellar door. A day of wine tasting sure takes it out of you!
The lady who took us through our tasting was super pleasant and friendly and was happy to tell us all about Rockcliffe. I hate going to wineries where it’s literally like getting blood out of a stone to find out the story behind the wines.
It was interesting to find out that Rockcliffe use to actually be an apple orchard until in the 1980’s a new owner took over and planted dry-grown grape vines. But what I think was my favourite part of learning more about this Great Southern winery was where the name came from. The owner Steve Hall is a geologist and re-named the winery (previously known as Matilda’s Estate) Rockcliffe after the 100m high granite rock cliffs in the eastern end of Denmark’s main bay. That same granite lies beneath the winery and influences the character of the wines made on the property. How interesting is that!
There are plentiful wines to try at the cellar door as Rockcliffe produced 5 ranges of wines which include the; Rockcliffe Single Site, Third Reef (Estate Range), Quarram Rocks, Peaceful Bay and the Rivage (Sparkling Range). The single site Chardy was an absolute winner in my eyes but I was also head over heels for the bubbles (I bet you’re shocked to hear that!). Here is my tasting note:
Rockcliffe Rivage Sparkling Cuvee
Naturally I fell for their sparkling wine at $27 a bottle. On the eye it has small fast streaming bubbles with a shiny yellow hue. Aromas of orchard fruits, grapes and toastiness. On the palate it’s a fruit salad bomb with shortbread, lemongrass and brûlée notes intertwined with the fruity flavours. Lovely lively bubbles with a super clean finish, the perfect aperitif bubbles!
On my next trip to Denmark, I will most definitely be booking in for a meal at the restaurant and I also hear they do awesome Sunday sessions with live music in Summer!
Find out more about Rockcliffe Wines:
Address: 18 Hamilton Road, Denmark, WA, 6333
Phone: 08 9848 1951
Email: [email protected]
Opening times: 11am to 5pm 7 days a week.
Wine Styles/Grape Varieties: Sparkling wines (red and white), Riesling, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Semillon, Chenin Blanc, Rose, Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon, Shiraz, Merlot and Port Muscat
Wine tasting cost: Free!
Food available: Yes at Petite Villaine
Child friendly: Lots of space outside. No playground from what I could see
Check out more Great Southern spots to visit right here.