“Annadel Gap Vineyard is one of the most uniquely developed estate sites that I have worked with. The unique geology and climate, the diversity of clones and selections make this a bit like a kid in a candy store opportunity.  I am truly impressed by the potential of this estate and the commitment of the entire team.”
 

Ben Cane

Winemaker


One look at Ben’s resume reveals that he has definitely followed his dream. Native of Australia, after earning a B.S. in Organic Chemistry and Psychology from the University of Adelaide, a pivotal conversation with a family friend and winemaking mentor led him back for a post-graduate diploma in oenology in 1998.  While in graduate school, to supplement and pay for his education he worked in many aspects of the wine industry, including vineyard and cellar work and managing a bottle shop. With winemaking degree in hand, Ben set out first for the Hunter Valley, where he worked a harvest and then to Santa Barbara County in California, where he was assistant winemaker for Arcadian Wines.

With the travel bug, his wanderlust for travel and wine, led him on an around-the-globe trip to South America, Africa, Asia and Europe, and after working another harvest at Arcadian, he ventured back to Australia as a vineyard manager in the Barossa Valley. During the time, for the next five years, Ben worked alternate vintages between Australia and Europe, with cellar and winemaking jobs in the Languedoc, New South Wales, at Domaine Dujac in Morey-St.-Denis, De Bortoli Wines in Yarra Valley, Poderi Colla in Piedmont and Yalumba Wines in the Barossa.

In 2006 Ben traveled back to the United States and became a harvest assistant winemaker at Joseph Phelp’s Freestone Vineyards.  In 2007, he was hired in an assistant winemaker role for the developing Pinot Noir program at Twomey Cellars and in 2008 was named as Winemaker.  Through the 2013 vintage, Ben led the development of the Twomey Cellar’s exceptional Pinot Noir program, making Pinot Noir from Russian River and expanding the program to other regional and vineyard-focused wines.  

In 2014, Ben was hired on as winemaker at Westwood Estate. Overseeing winemaking for this Estate is a dream job for him.  Leading winemaking for this Estate is the perfect blend for Ben’s passion for Pinot Noir and Rhone varietals.