Capel Vale was the first winery in Western Australia to own and establish vineyards in the cool climate regions of Margaret River, Mount Barker and Geographe. As a result, Capel Vale now produces wines of definitive regional flavour and varietal expression with a focus on balance, complexity and elegant fruit flavours.
Capel Vale is a pioneer in WA with vines planted in 1974. The initial winery was built on the Stirling Estate in Capel in 1979 followed shortly thereafter with the first vintage made by Dr Peter Pratten in 1980.
As pioneers within the Western Australia wine industry, Capel Vale wears its feather with pride as the first family owned winery to identify and refine the viticultural potential in the outstanding cool climate regions of Geographe, Mount Barker and Margaret River in Western Australia.
While suiting a variety of tastes, these individual wines reflect a winemaking philosophy of wines with balance, complexity and elegant fruit flavours that gives rise to wines demonstrating distinctive regional essence of these finest 3 cool climate wine regions.
From the company’s creation in 1974 by Dr Peter and Elizabeth Pratten, to handing of the torch over to son Simon Pratten in the mid 2000’s, Capel Vale has always been one of the leading family-owned and managed wineries.
Why the Duck?
The Capel River, adjacent to Capel Vale winery is home to many species of waterfowl, including the protected Sheldrake, or native Mountain Duck. When the Pratten family originally planted the vines in 1974, the Mountain Ducks constantly surrounded them, reminding them of their presence whilst they work.
The banks of the Capel River were deliberately untouched to allow the ducks to maintain their natural habitat and can still be seen today, squawking merrily along their way “symbolise what Capel Vale is all about”
Ducks are social animals, and adopt those around them as family and flock. In choosing this space as a place to create Capel Vale wines, the Pratten family knew that these ducks had to symbolise what Capel Vale is all about. For over four decades, the quacking of generations of Sheldrakes have reminded the Prattens and all those that visit Capel Vale, that they are part of something very special.
The male Sheldrake possesses the exuberant orange band and is one of the only times we dare say that the male will outshine the female form!