Ben was born in the Hunter Valley, NSW surrounded by vineyards and fine wine. He studied Biochemistry at The University of Sydney and spent his uni holidays picking grapes in the local vineyards.
After Ben graduated in 1996, his first job was with Tyrrell’s in the Hunter Valley. Winemaking soon became a way of life for Ben and he headed off to Languedoc in the south of France and travelled through Bordeaux, Champagne, Alsace, Rhone and Burgundy; his passion for winemaking further ignited.
In 1999, Ben moved to Adelaide to complete a Diploma in Oenology, and enjoyed the opportunity of working vintages in McLaren Vale and Coonawarra.
In 2011, drawn by the temptation of Margaret River Cabernet Sauvignon, Ben moved across to WA and joined the Devil’s Lair team.
While at Devil’s Lair, Ben has worked closely with the winemaking and viticulture team on the evolution of the Devil’s Lair style, particularly Cabernet Sauvignon. This has included greater use of large oak barrels to mature the best Cabernet, and restricting Devil’s Lair Chardonnay and Cabernet to only a few select French Oak cooperages each vintage – techniques which allow greater expression of vintage and vineyard characters in each wine.
In 2017 Ben was appointed Senior Winemaker at Devil’s Lair. Ben is looking forward to continuing the philosophy of Devil’s Lair wines: to create outstanding examples of Margaret River’s leading varieties that are respected for their great clarity, delicate fruit flavours and elegant structure – with the freedom to do things a little differently.
Outside of the winery Ben’s three children keep him on his toes. A sports fanatic, Ben lives and breathes Margaret River’s outdoorsy lifestyle – in particular hitting the beach for a surf or lengthy open-water swim.