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ISSUE NO. 301 / JANUARY 2020





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this issue... REGULARS


3 4


14 16 18 20 22 24

Editorial - Sophie Preece

From Wine Marlborough Vance Kerslake Pioneer - Andy Frost Forgotten Corners - Huia Vineyards


Generation Y-ine - Henri Steele Sustainability Watch - Dr Edwin Massey Industry News Wine Happenings


Crown Sheetmetal are creating “world first” tanks for the Bragato Research Institute winery, which is to open next month. Photo by Jim Tannock.

Wine & Food Fest The ‘godfather of fusion’, a reggae phenomenon and a sashimi master promise to be the perfect blend at next month’s Marlborough Wine & Food Festival.


Research Winery Marlborough’s new research winery will provide a sustainability benchmark for industry at large, says Bragato Research Institute establishment manager Tracy Benge, a month out from opening day.

10 Waste Watchers


Marlborough’s non-compliant wineries need to look to and learn from the industry’s best performers, says Wine Marlborough general manager Marcus Pickens in the wake of the latest Winery Wastewater and Grape Marc Monitoring Report.


Winepress January 2020 / 1

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General Manager: Marcus Pickens 03 577 9299 Editor: Sophie Preece 027 308 4455 Advertising: Harriet Wadworth 03 577 9299 Wine Marlborough Board: Ben Ensor Beth Forrest Callum Linklater Jack Glover Kirsty Harkness Nick Entwistle Stuart Dudley (Deputy Chair) Tom Trolove (Chair) Tracy Johnston

From the Editor In October 2016, the Government announced that the New Zealand Winegrowers Research Centre would receive funding from the MBIE Regional Research Institute initiative, designed to support innovation in the regions. Three years and a few months later, the Bragato Research Institute (BRI), as it’s now known, is thriving, with a new research winery on the cusp of opening. The winery is a showcase of sustainability, with several key measures integral to its design, including solar panels and a Building Management System, to keep close tabs on the energy, water and CO2. However, it’s got potential to be even better, says establishment manager Tracy Benge, who wants the winery to improve its sustainability credentials over time, with the likes of battery banks and a wastewater treatment system put in place as funding allows. This month’s cover shot is at Crown Sheetmetal in Blenheim, where the BRI is having 84 “world first” 200l tanks made, along with 196 inserts, ready for the upcoming vintage. They’ve been designed in Marlborough and made in Marlborough, and are an example of the local talent and resource utilised to create the new winery. With the exception of the architects, who are in Nelson, every contractor has been Marlborough-based, making this the ultimate inside job. The facility will help New Zealand’s wine industry be a world leader in technology, techniques and innovations when it comes to winemaking. It will also provide a benchmark that wineries can look to, in order to reduce waste and improve sustainability, says Tracy on page 8. “It’s not about telling people what to do, because that’s not our job. It’s about showcasing what can be done.” This month’s edition of Winepress introduces one of the industry’s newest stars, Henri Steele, who won the NMIT student trophy at the recent QuayConnect Marlborough Wine Show. It also profiles one of its remarkable stalwarts, Andy Frost, who joined Montana in 1982 and retired from Pernod Ricard Winemakers late last year. We also look at the latest winery waste report from the Marlborough District Council, which shows a continued improvement overall, despite some wineries failing when it comes to their treatment of wastewater and grape marc. As we hurtle towards Vintage 2020, here’s hoping their New Year’s resolution is to lift their game to protect the environment, and the reputation of Marlborough’s wine industry.

Jamie Marfell

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Disclaimer: The views and articles that are expressed and appear in Winepress are entirely those of contributors and in no way reflect the policy of the Marlborough Winegrowers. Any advice given, implied or suggested should be considered on its merits, and no responsibility can be taken for problems arising from the use of such information.

Winepress January 2020 / 3


From Wine Marlborough Doing better with winery waste VANCE KERSLAKE

IN OCTOBER 2018, dozens of industry members crammed into the theatre at the Marlborough Research Centre to address a looming crisis with grape marc. Prosecutions and negative media coverage were impacting on Marlborough’s reputation for sustainable winegrowing, and the closure of GrowCo meant some wineries needed another way of managing their grape marc for vintage 2019. What we didn’t know then was that vintage was only five months away for some. Fast forward to November 2019, and the situation with grape marc has improved significantly. According to the Marlborough District Council’s Winery Wastewater & Grape Marc Monitoring Report, released late last year, “overall an improved management and awareness of grape marc storage was noted in the 2019 vintage year”. The industry rose to the challenge, with green spreading to vineyards and a large spreading

“The aim has to be for full compliance.” Vance Kerslake operation at Bankhouse Estate (Winepress April 2019). Others set up composting facilities such as Yealands Estate (Winepress May 2019) where Wine Marlborough hosted a wellattended field trip last October. Pacific Rim Environmental established a grape marc drying plant (Winepress 4 / Winepress January 2020

June 2019) where we held a second field trip in November. Through collaboration, sharing knowledge and fronting up to the challenge, the industry has turned things around in one vintage The environmental challenge for next vintage is winery wastewater. The fact that most wineries that discharge wastewater to land are non-compliant has flown under the radar - until now. Late last year The Marlborough Express ran the headline, “Significantly non-compliant winery to have wastewater practices investigated”, in reaction to the Winery Wastewater report. The compliance snapshot shows only 44% of winery wastewater discharges were compliant with all conditions. Non-compliance ranges from technical non-compliance with minor or no adverse environmental effects (e.g. failure to keep records) through to significant non-compliance. The aim has to be for full compliance, so the industry does need to see some improvement. There has been little improvement over time. With a significantly non-compliant winery in this report, arguably the situation has got worse. The good news is some of the non-compliance could be easily fixed. Council have told me some of the non-compliance involves just one or two things that should be relatively straightforward to fix. We know everyone in the industry wants to be sustainable and look after the environment - there’s no question about that. Wine Marlborough wants to assist the industry by taking the

same approach as we all did with grape marc. We, assisted by council, will run an information session for wineries about wastewater compliance later this month or in February, to encourage greater compliance. From our side of things, we need to get people to learn from those who are doing well - it’s about sharing knowledge. Council’s compliance group want to support the industry in continuing a proactive and constructive partnership approach with education, relationship building and graduated enforcement only when required. The forestry compliance report was presented at the same council meeting, and there was a fair amount of non-compliance in that report as well. The Compliance Group also wanted to take an education approach with forestry. After six years of no improvement, they want a firmer approach with more of a focus on enforcement. The message is clear we have an opportunity to sort out our compliance and they are happy to work with us to achieve this. However, council’s patience does eventually run out, as forestry have experienced. Luckily, the wine industry can achieve great things in a short space of time when it sets its mind to it, as was proven with grape marc.


Blood, Sweat & Beers   The annual Blood, Sweat & Beers inter-winery mountain bike competition, run by the Winemakers Association of Marlborough, was held at Jentree Mountain Bike Park, thanks to hosts Justin and Victoria Leov. Photos by Sarnim Dean

Winepress January 2020 / 5


Wine & Food Festival fever sets in SOPHIE PREECE

THE ‘GODFATHER of fusion’, a reggae phenomenon and a sashimi master promise to be the perfect blend at next month’s Marlborough Wine & Food Festival. Festival committee chair Tracy Johnston says the team carefully considers the mix of entertainment and talent to showcase Marlborough’s wine and food. This year is no exception, having tempted internationally renowned chef Peter Gordon and Kiwi icon band Katchafire to headline the event, along with a sashimi expert in the masterclass tent. “The Marlborough Wine & Food Festival is recognised as New Zealand’s premier annual food and wine event,” says Tracy. “Our team works hard to ensure they retain the balance that has built that reputation as a widely

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anticipated and memorable event, while ensuring it remains fresh and relevant each year.” The 2020 festival will have 40plus wineries scattered around its Brancott Estate site, dozens of food producers and an eclectic selection of performers, including The Feelers, says Wine Marlborough events manager Loren Coffey. The Culinary Pavilion will be running hot, with Peter Gordon and a local cuisine genius sharing the secrets of seasoning, searing and serving, with their wits sharpened and their palates honed. Next door to the pavilion, festivalgoers can settle in to a Marlborough master class, tackling a tasty study of Sauvignon & Cheese in the first session, and Secrets of Sashimi, matched with Marlborough wines, in the second. Loren says tickets are selling quickly, with the locals only passes whipped up early on, and only a few of the exclusive VIP tickets now available. “The effort the committee and Wine Marlborough have put into boosting the VIP tent over the past few years, to make it really premium, has set a standard, and now it sells out quickly.” The tent has a Hamptons theme this year, with a cracking-good game of croquet on the cards.

The platinum tickets are also selling quickly, with only a few up for grabs. Those lucky guests catch a chopper to and from Brancott Estate, where they find a winemaker host,

“Those lucky guests catch a chopper to and from Brancott Estate.” backstage passes, masterclass tickets and a private chef’s table with Karaka Cuisine’s Sander de Wildt. But for many, the standard festival pass - with a gorgeous vineyard site hosting some of the country’s best wine, food and music, along with a friendly festival vibe - is all that’s required, says Loren. “This really is one of the best days out in Marlborough.”

Photos this page and opposite page by Richard Briggs


Winepress January 2020 / 7


BRIght Ideas Sustainability a key focus of new research winery SOPHIE PREECE

MARLBOROUGH’S NEW research winery will provide a sustainability benchmark for industry at large, says Bragato Research Institute establishment manager Tracy Benge, a month out from opening day. The institute’s research winery is the first building in Marlborough to register a 5-star Green Star standard with the New Zealand Green Building Council, and has been future-proofed to allow for upscaled sustainability as time and funding allow, Tracy says. “We are launching the winery in February under a continuous improvement sustainability plan. We want to embark on a number of other projects once we are up and running.” Solar panels already gleam on the roof of the winery, which is located at the Marlborough Research Centre, along with Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT), Plant & Food Research (PFR), New Zealand Winegrowers and Wine Marlborough. The panels are capable of producing 20% to 30% of the winery’s power requirements, but the vision is for solar self-sufficiency and power storage. Once the winery is operational, Tracy will approach possible sponsors

New BRI tanks being built at Crown Sheetmetal. Photo Jim Tannock

about funding battery banks. “I would also like to think more blue sky about whether in the future we could have a community solar scheme.” Electric and solar energy, as well as CO2 and water use, will be monitored through a building management system (BMS), providing a baseline for improvement. The winery roof has been designed to collect water, which is filtered and UV treated to become potable, then used for cleaning the winery. A cleaning in place (CIP) station, using mobile tanks and a centralised water collection, is another example of efficiency and of future proofing. While the wastewater currently goes to the trade waste system, stage two of the project will see it collected for a winery wastewater treatment system, allowing reuse of the resource, says Tracy. “Again, we didn’t have the money upfront to do that, but it’s part of our vision.” The Bragato Research Institute (BRI), formerly the New Zealand Winegrowers Research Centre, was

established with funding from the Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment (MBIE) under its Regional Research Institute initiative, to support innovation in the provinces. The Government announced in October 2016 that it would allocate $10.5 million in funding over three years for the venture, and the Marlborough District Council set aside $75,000 for its establishment and a further $150,000 in co-funding each year from 2017 to 2022. The BRI was then successful in its business case to MBIE for an additional $2m funding for the winery, with sustainability best practice a big part of the sales pitch, says Tracy. “It’s not about telling people what to do, because that’s not our job. It’s about showcasing what can be done.” The other selling point was the ability to trial new technology and innovation, ensuring the New Zealand wine industry is at the cutting edge of modern winemaking. The BRI has already designed and built custom-

Keeping it local The Bragato Research Institute (BRI) has looked to the top of the South for the design, build and fit-out of its new research winery. Almost all of the contractors involved are from Marlborough, with the only exception being the architects, who are based in Nelson, says BRI establishment manager Tracy Benge. “The Regional Research Institute initiative was about growth in the regions, and we have used local resources every step of the way.” Keeping it local is also a requirement for a 5-star Green Star standard with the New Zealand Green Building Council, she says. “We are so fortunate to live in Marlborough, with access to such a diverse set of world-class skills, knowledge and experience, from construction and the trades through to design and engineering.”

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Tracy Benge

made fermentation tanks, which enable the option of four smaller trials within each tank, “thereby quadrupling our capacity whilst reducing variability through maximum standardisation and automation of winemaking practices”, says Tracy. A handful of the “world first” prototypes were trialed successfully at the NMIT teaching winery in vintage 2019, with

We will potentially be the testing ground for prototypes.” Tracy Benge the results compared to the same fruit fermented in commercial wineries. The proof is in the pudding, and guests at a BRI launch event could not distinguish between the trial and commercial wines, says Tracy. Based on that success, another 84 200l tanks are being built by Crown Sheetmetal in Blenheim, as well as another 196 inserts, ready for the upcoming vintage.

They’ll be there in the nick of time, with demand building for space in the facility, says Tracy. PFR plans to run some of its trials there this vintage, and industry will be able to use the BRI tanks to test new products, techniques or technology. “Supporting the industry with winemaking innovation is a key driver”, she says. Other technology to be put in place this vintage includes new VinWizard probes, which will enable the researchers and winemakers to control processes remotely. Meanwhile, the publication of a new BRI Research Winery blog has resulted in several commercial companies, from New Zealand and abroad, approaching the BRI about tapping in to the resource, she says. “Next year will be quite a game changer in that we will hopefully be using the tanks to trial wine products for companies on a commercial basis.” That will provide an income stream for the winery, while helping the industry at large by enabling technological advancements, she says. “We will potentially be the testing ground for prototypes.” The BRI and its winery are based in Blenheim but are tasked with driving benefit for the wider New Zealand industry, “for every grape grower and winemaker across the country”, says Tracy. The new winery will adapt as the industry and technology changes, “positioning ourselves at the forefront of winemaking and grape growing – from grape to glass”.

Tōtara cuves make history One of New Zealand’s newest wineries has utilised some of the industry’s oldest history, with a conference table forged from tōtara cuves. The cuves were donated to the Bragato Research Institute (BRI) by Esk Valley Winery in Hawke’s Bay, and carry a rich story within their stained grain. Research winery project manager Tracy Benge says Croatian coopers living in New Zealand in the early to mid-20th century created their cuves out of tōtara, in an example of ‘number 8 wire’ mentality. The BRI blog quotes Tony Soljan of Soljan Estate, talking of the creation of one of the cuves for his grandfather in the 1930s. “A Mr Woolf had a cooperage in Newmarket, Auckland, and made barrels for breweries. He also made tōtara barrels for wineries and the ones that we still use were made by him.” The blog says tōtara was not used to impart flavour onto a wine, “but several sources have indicated that the wood absorbed favourable characteristics from wines stored in them and subsequent wines stored in the barrels absorbed these flavours.” Tracy says the staves were sent to the NMIT carpentry unit in Nelson, where students were offered the opportunity to design and build a unique table that celebrates the history of its materials. “We asked them to capture the essence of the barrels whilst providing functionality for meetings and events.” Winepress January 2020 / 9


Waste Watchers A review of winery wastewater and grape marc disposal SOPHIE PREECE Rapaura Springs gets full marks for its grape marc handling

MARLBOROUGH WINERIES need to look to and learn from the industry’s best performers, says Wine Marlborough general manager Marcus Pickens, following council's latest winery waste report. “The report from the 2019 vintage shows that while many are doing just as they should, others clearly need to do better, and it appears that there are some relatively easy wins we can make to improve the overall performance.” The Marlborough District Council’s Winery Wastewater and Grape Marc Monitoring Report has revealed that 16 (44%) of the 36 wineries surveyed were compliant, up from 14 in 2018.

Another eight (22%) were assessed as technically non-compliant, referring to minor breaches with no adverse environmental effects. Eleven (31%) of the wineries were assessed as non-compliant, but nine of those had breached only one condition or rule. However, one winery was assessed as significantly non-compliant, with a number of conditions not met, including pH exceedance, nitrogen loading and ponding. The council would not reveal the name of the company involved, but said it was working with the winery in order to achieve compliance. The most common area of non-

Liquid waste In the lead up to vintage, it is important to ensure your processes and systems for disposing of both liquid and solid waste are up to date with the relevant regulations, says Marlborough District Council (MDC) monitoring programme co-ordinator Rachel Neal. She has supplied the following information for those who discharge into or onto land: Is the disposal area located within a Soil Sensitive Area? You can check the Environmental Smart Map on the MDC website: •Is the disposal area located within 50m of a bore? Check the Well Locations Smart Map. •Is the disposal area located within 20m of a river, lake, significant wetland, drainage channel or within 10m of 10 / Winepress January 2020

compliance for the monitoring period was exceeding the permitted range on one or more occasions for pH, with eight wineries falling foul of the limits. Other breaches included the discharge/storage of grape marc on a Soil Sensitive Area (five wineries), sampling not completed as required, minor ponding, exceeding discharge rate, and nitrogen loading exceedance. The report notes that there is a large range in processing capacity, from the smallest rural winery, which crushed 22 tonnes, to one of the largest rural wineries, which processed more than 28,000 tonnes.

property boundaries? •Is the disposal area large enough to not exceed the discharge rate and soil moisture field capacity? • Do you have pH monitoring in place to ensure that the pH is between 4.5-9 prior to being discharged to land? Remember to keep records to demonstrate the pH level and note any adjustments made. Please note: It is important to have sufficient storage available in order to defer discharges when adverse weather conditions occur. For more information, contact the council’s monitoring team on 03 520 7400 or February’s Winepress will have a guide on grape marc storage and leachate


Sparkle & Shine There’s a méthode to their madness SOPHIE PREECE

MARLBOROUGH WINE producers are “seriously serious” about making great sparkling wines, says Bhatia Dheeraj, international judge at the recent Marlborough Wine Show. The head sommelier of Est. Merivale Sydney, who won the 2019 Judy Hirst Award for the Sommelier Responsible for the Best List, did two blind tastings of Méthode Marlborough wines during his visit to the region. “I personally didn’t know that there were so many great producers who are seriously serious about making great sparkling wines in Marlborough,” he says, impressed by the “unity” of Méthode Marlborough’s producers. “It was a great exercise and I was amazed with the diversity and styles that sparkling wines from Marlborough had to offer.” The tasting was part of a fresh push from Méthode Marlborough - a cooperative of 11 sparkling producers to showcase the quality and breadth of the bubbles in their portfolio, says new

group chair Matt Ward, winemaker at Wither Hills. The society was founded in 2013, and its members work to stay engaged, ensuring Méthode Marlborough remains “energised”, he says. Recent collaborations have included events that educate consumers about the breadth of the region’s bubbles offering, and sending a mixed case to select domestic wine writers, who were encouraged to taste the wines blind. “For us that is about removing the bias and reinforcing the diversity,” Matt says. Johanneshof winemaker Edel Everling, who worked alongside Matt to organise Bhatia’s tasting, says the group followed it with a similar tasting for Méthode Marlborough members, with everyone from winemakers to marketers gathering to try the portfolio of wines blind. “It showcases the strength of each wine best if you go by the palate and bouquet,” she says. “You do not need to be influenced by the label at that stage.” It can also reveal some surprises, because while all Méthode Marlborough wines are made to certain stipulations - the second fermentation is done in the bottle, varieties are limited to Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier grapes, and wines are aged for a minimum of 18 months - there are plenty of differences to be discovered. “Although we follow all the same rules, we still have very individual styles and the resulting wines are quite

diverse in style and taste,” Edel says. “That may be to do with growing sites, the condition of the grapes, and the influence of each winemaker.” The use of barrel aged reserve wines, malolactic

“I was amazed with the diversity and styles that sparkling wines from Marlborough had to offer.” Bhatia Dheeraj. fermentations, different yeasts and varying time on lees are just some of the variables at play, she says. The variation isn’t necessarily only between different labels, because when it comes to méthode traditionelle, two bottles made the same year from the same fruit and yeast in the same winery may still slightly different wines, says Edel. “It’s because each individual bottle undergoes its own individual fermentation. That is what makes it so exciting,” she says. “Each little bottle is really an individual thing and should be looked at as such.” Winepress January 2020 / 11


Personality Plus A kind and warm welcome wins hearts SOPHIE PREECE

WHEN A visitor walks into the Yealands Estate Cellar Door, Nina Huria-Bryce puts herself straight in their shoes. “I think, ‘how would l like to be greeted? How do we want to be seen as Kiwis? What experience would I want to take away?’” Then she uses that to serve up the kind of warm New Zealand welcome that wins hearts, and won Nina first equal in the 2019 Cellar Door Personality of the Year competition. “We don’t take people’s visits lightly,” says the cellar door manager, aware that visitors who come to Seaview, on the Awatere Valley’s east coast, have made an effort to detour to Yealands. Many have been sent by Marlborough-based family and friends, others by other operators in Kaikoura, Kekerengu, Blenheim and Picton, she says. “We are really appreciative of the people who refer us - we get people who really champion the brand and the company.” The visitors who come range from the wine-focused to those on a once-in-a-lifetime holiday. Some are captured by Yealands’ sustainability initiatives, and others simply want a day out, perhaps exploring the White Road - Yealand’s view-drenched vineyard drive - before popping in to the cellar door. Those things give the company its “uniqueness”, says Nina. “I think every cellar door in Marlborough has its unique story - not only the winemaking and terroir. For some people it might just be getting in touch with nature. More and more people

12 / Winepress January 2020

are becoming interested in sustainability. It’s quite a powerful story among all members of our global community.” Before Nina became the Yealand’s cellar door manager in 2017, she owned and managed Pātaka, a gourmet food store that focussed on artisan New Zealand products, and tapped into her love of her Māori heritage. She established the store in 2013, utilising a background in food technology and a love of cooking, and says it was incredible to get to know artisan producers and to understand “the pride and the quality and the heartfelt work that goes into producing on a small scale.” There was value in her two young children seeing the business “evolve and grow”, but the workload began to be “crazy”, so Nina looked to the wine industry, which she had long admired. Her cellar manager role, which includes an array of tasks, from marketing to merchandise, is similar to running a small business, but with the advantage of a network of people beyond the cellar door. They’re all connected, whether in the winery or mowing the lawns, say Nina. “We are all one team.” She’s still pretty “flabbergasted” at winning the award, because she and her team went along to the Wine

Marlborough Cellar Door of the Year event to simply enjoy a glass of wine and support the initiative and industry. Walking away with the top spot was not part of the plan, she says. “I’m still pinching myself to make sure it’s real.”

Winning field trip Nina Huria-Bryce from Yealands Estate Wines, and Blair Macdonald from Bladen Wines were joint winners of the 2019 Cellar Door Personality of the Year competition. Wine Marlborough marketing and communications manager Harriet Wadworth says generous support from NZWineHome saw the winning duo travel to Central Otago for three days to experience some of the best wine tourism offerings in that region. “They were hosted by Grant from NZWineHome, looked after exceptionally well, and learned a heap from all the wonderful cellar door hosts in Central Otago.”






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Winepress January 2020 / 13


Industry Pioneer The hands-on career of Andy Frost BRENDA WEBB

BACK IN 1982, Andy Frost was studying plant ecology at university and Montana was rapidly expanding its Marlborough operations. The fresh-faced graduate hadn’t really planned his future, but when he spied a job with the pioneering company, he applied to be a trainee winemaker. The night before the interview he read ‘The Production of Grapes and Wine in a Cool Climate’ by David Jackson and Danny Schuster. “I understood science and had a passion for plants and knew Marlborough was suited to grapes and olives,” he says. “I got the job and joined Jane Hunter and Tony Pritchard at Montana, working under John Simes, and became a career

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winemaker.” Andy remained with Montana in all its incarnations - Allied Domecq and now Pernod Ricard Winemakers - until taking early retirement at the end of October 2019. “I never needed to hop around - every single day was fun, I loved my job and I was given a lot of freedom by the company.” While many people talk about luck in the industry, Andy reckons Montana’s phenomenal growth and success in the early days was due to much more. “They had very good advisors and excellent technology, especially when it came to handling liquids,” he says. “And remember, grapes had been grown here much, much earlier, so for Montana to

“Every single day was fun. I loved my job.” Andy Frost expand into Marlborough was a sensible thing, and they did it well.” Back in the 1980s there were few wine producers. A 1984 Michael Cooper book Andy has in his extensive library includes a small chapter on Marlborough with Hunter’s (with winemaker Almuth Lorenz), and Te Whare Ra featured alongside Montana. Sauvignon Blanc was not the star it is today - many of those first plantings included other varieties such as Cabernet Sauvignon and MüllerThurgau.


Andy cut his teeth on those, as well as learning how to make and produce sherry and port, a staple in the Montana portfolio. As the company grew so did the wines and in 1988 - six years after taking on the job - Andy took responsibility for the sparkling wines. Montana wanted to move into premium wines, and began a long and “wonderful” association with Deutz. “André Lallier and Christian Roguenant from Deutz came out here and I learned a huge amount from them about sparkling wines and blending,” he says. “Sparkling wine is tricky because you are making decisions that are not going to come to fruition for many years.” Andy also oversaw the development of Brancott’s ‘letter’ series of wines. But the highlight for him was producing a Chardonnay from handharvested and whole bunch pressed grapes, after “nagging” the powers that be to allow him to do so. “We did release it under the Penfolds label and it immediately won a trophy, which

“Sparkling wine is tricky because you are making decisions that are not going to come to fruition for many years.” Andy Frost was a huge thrill and recognition that perseverance pays off.” He describes himself as very hands-on, and for every harvest he donned his blue overalls to get involved. In the early days, Andy

worked night shift and remembers his third vintage in 1985 clearly. “My daughter was born on March 12 and two days later night shift began - I went to work at 6pm and came home between 9am and 10am. My wife was at home with my daughter, and a twoyear-old, and a four-and-a-half-yearold. It was diabolical.” Andy has been responsible for research in recent years, and commends Pernod Ricard on its innovation and support of research. He also became involved with the Marlborough Falcon Conservation Trust and gets a huge thrill from seeing the breeding and rehabilitation programme at the Brancott Heritage Centre, something he plans to continue. He’s retiring slightly earlier than planned, but it’s a mutually agreed and happy arrangement with no regrets. “I plan to set up a consultancy, but I want to be largely retired and get more involved in conservation and get back to my passion – plants.”

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Winepress January 2020 / 15


Forgotten Corners Putting nature to good work at Huia SOPHIIE PREECE

DOZENS OF small birds chatter in Claire and Mike Allan’s lush Rapaura garden, drawn by the seed heads swaying between Huia’s vineyard rows. They swoop in mid-sward to dine on the oats, phacelia and buckwheat there, and if you let off a bang in the lead up to harvest, will fly from the grasses, not the grapes, says Claire. That’s one of the many “illuminations” she and Mike have had since planting their own vineyard in 1994. “Lessons in listen and look before you do anything. Nature is very helpful and nature likes things to grow.” When they bought it in 1991, this 8-hectare block was a mixed orchard of apples, cherries, citrus, kiwifruit and olives. Mike and Claire were fulltime winemakers, he at Cloudy Bay and she at Stoneleigh, and they spent four

Well, well, well

years working nights and weekends to get the place cleared and ready for vines. Five grand old walnut trees were preserved, still centre stage today, and the olive trees were transplanted to create a leafy fence around their house, built from old man pine trees growing on the section. They then set about planting their vines, ignoring advice to take an aggressive stance against nature. They grew conventionally to begin with, unsure how to tackle the stony rows without spraying, but “it never felt right”, says Mike, who grew up on a Hawke’s Bay farm, where gardens and orchards supplied the pantry and no one considered glyphosate. “There was an attitude that you should have residual weed sprays and things when getting your vines establish, but none

“There are still a lot of people who regard nature as something terrifying that is going to come out of the long grass and somehow bite them.” Claire Allan of that resonated with us.” Huia became BioGro organic certified in 2008, following something of a battle to shift the culture of a crew used to conventionally clean vines.

Pete can help with any questions you have about water access. Want to know more about the aquifer beneath your feet or where your well sources its groundwater from? Hydrologist Peter Davidson has extensive knowledge of Marlborough’s water resources and can advise you on the state of your aquifer heading into the summer irrigation season.

Peter Davidson Environmental Scientist

T: 03 520 7400 M: 021 503 107

16 / Winepress January 2020


“Getting used to the fact that it’s not looking untidy. It’s looking balanced and natural,” says Mike. Fast forward 25 years and that balance is cranking, with the vines as healthy as he’s ever seen them, birds grazing on seeds not grapes, and emerging knowledge and technologies that are changing the face of organics. The Allans have been working with Marlborough’s Kiwi Seed on their cover crops, and this spring trialled deep-rooted oats, buckwheat and peas beneath Chardonnay and Pinot Noir, working to reduce the vines’ vigour on heavier soils, while providing a habitat for beneficial insects. Alternate rows have the natural sward, and both will be mulched back in once they’re done. Meanwhile the vineyard’s sparser, stonier soils get richer every year, thanks to estate-made compost and effective microorganisms (EMs). “It’s amazing when you see this stuff in action”, Mike says of the EMs brewing in a barrel, waiting to be sprayed on the soil. These less fertile soils are planted with lower vigour cover crops, providing less competition for the vines. While such crops are not new to Huia, this season marks a major shift in their approach, selecting species specific to variety and soil profile, and switching them mid row where necessary. The long-term plan is for low-lying strawberry clover to selfseed and take over, so that “nature is managing itself”, Mike says. They are also excited by new technology coming to market, including a weeder that can go under the vines and above the ground, minimising soil disturbance. But the biggest and most exciting change coming is the use of biological controls, with the ability to target powdery mildew and botrytis, says Mike. “I have been 30 years in the industry and I haven’t come across anything with the potential to be this game-changing.” Organics is a constant learning curve, he says. “No two blocks are the same and what works on one might not work on another. That’s a very different way of looking at a block

than in conventional, where you have a recipe.” He’s no expert, he says, but he knows Huia’s vines are healthy and produce good fruit. “We certainly don’t have the yield requirements that bigger companies may have, but we are also commanding a premium and I think that’s what Marlborough should be doing anyway.” The Allans recently reduced their vineyard operation by selling a block on the outskirts of Blenheim. “We wanted to focus on our home block and we have some wonderful growers who operate organically,” says Mike. “We really like having a smaller area we can really take care of, and we can concentrate on the wines.” Their model is not about growth, he adds. “We just work towards making better wines and getting a better return on them.” The kilometres of sprayed strips throughout the province are disappointing, especially as markets call time on glyphosate, he says. “It’s ridiculous. I just don’t get it when a lot of countries are banning it. Supermarket chains are saying ‘no more’ and I would have thought that everything about New Zealand should be absolutely trying to avoid this stuff... I don’t believe it does anyone any good. I don’t believe it does the soil any good.” Claire says the market is pushing for clean food, water and wine, but there’s a gap between that global trend and the number of organic grape growers. “We have to accept that there

are still a lot of people who regard nature as something terrifying that is going to come out of the long grass and somehow bite them,” she says. “For them it is all about keeping nature under control and keeping it taped down.” But the “biggest protector of biodiversity on the planet is organic agriculture”, she says, speaking from a vineyard laden with habitats and literally buzzing with birds and insects - including bees from their own hive - not to mention the serious microbiology beneath their vines. “Organic agriculture is also the biggest protector of clean water and it goes on and on and on,” she says. “But we do have a bit of a gap at the vineyard end - we are still very much the minority, despite the big talk in the market about organic wine.” Huia’s ethos is to tap into nature, natural science and science and get the three working together “as friends not enemies”, says Claire. “You need some science to know what you are looking at and you need nature to continue to be incredible and fertile and growing.” They’d like to see organics burgeoning in New Zealand’s wine industry. “I can’t see why a hell of a lot more of our industry shouldn’t be run organically,” says Mike. “The technology is there now and for the longevity of the soils and everything else, it makes sense that big companies and everybody should be paying attention to it.” Winepress January 2020 / 17


Generation Y-ine Young student ‘steeles’ the show at NMIT KAT DUGGAN

HENRI STEELE decided to study at the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology because of her love of viticulture. But the 21-year-old has proven herself pretty handy in the winery as well, becoming the first winemaker to take a trophy in the Marlborough Wine Show’s new student category. Henri’s entry, a dry Pinot Gris named ‘Steele Pinot Gris 2019’, was the pick of the bunch, judged alongside eight other entries by chief judge Jack Glover. The wine delivered a “taut varietal Pinot Gris with spice and crunchy length,” says Jack. “Tasty stuff.” Henri says the accolade was completely unexpected. “It was really cool to actually get to make my own wine, getting the prize is a bit of a shock.” The wine was part of the Wine Production (Level 5) course, one of the steps Henri needed to complete for her Bachelor of Winemaking and Viticulture. Students were allocated 50kg of grapes for the project, sourced from Ormond Nursery, and she chose Pinot Gris based on the fruit available. “I haven’t even done a harvest in a winery before, that was my first experience making wine,” she says. Next year she will work her first vintage in a winery - Sugar Loaf Wines in Rapaura - and is excited to be stepping into a small-scale operation where there’ll be plenty of opportunities to learn. “I am really looking forward to working there, learning about the commercial realities of winemaking.” Henri grew up in different

18 / Winepress January 2020

places throughout the South Island, predominantly on dairy farms with her parents. A couple of years ago, they sold their farm and bought a vineyard in Marlborough, where Henri got her first taste of viticulture. For the past year, she has also been working for Berakah Vineyard Management. “They really helped me and inspired me;

“It was really cool to actually get to make my own wine.” Henri Steele with all of that knowledge, I found it really interesting and I knew it was something I wanted to do for a long time.” Despite her success in the Nelson Marlborough Institute of Technology (NMIT) winery, Henri is still focussed on viticulture and the great outdoors. “I think that’s definitely where I’m still drawn, I like being outside and I enjoy the hands-on nature of the work,” she says. “I love looking at the vines, as strange as that sounds. I like understanding why they grow - seeing it and understanding why they are

doing it.” Despite considering Lincoln University for her studies, Henri decided on NMIT because of its hands-on approach. “I like how they are really small courses - you get that whole one-on-one experience. I’m dyslexic and I find that when people try and explain something just by words… I need to see it to understand it.” NMIT has also been flexible in allowing Henri to be at work if and when she needs to be during term time. “If I’m at work, I’m still learning,” she says. Having student wines entered in the Marlborough Wine Show was instigated by NMIT Viticulture and Winemaking lead tutor Nadine Worley. Nadine says the 2019 class was an enthusiastic group of budding winemakers, who made some really impressive wines. “It was such a highlight for the students to have their wines judged as part of the Marlborough Wine Show, and overall one gold, two silver and three bronze medals were awarded, which is a fantastic effort for our first time winemakers.” For her efforts, Henri nabbed the Gingko Trophy which was created especially for the student category of the show and was named after the gingko tree at the Marlborough NMIT campus.


Shoot Thinning for Fruitfulness: A Shoot Thinning Trial on Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc - Part Two. Chris Henry of Henry Manufacturing is championing a trial this season on Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc evaluating the effect of different shoot thinning regimes. “The potential benefits of shoot thinning are many, says Chris. “Enhanced fruit-set, more balanced vines, easier pruning in the following year and improved disease control are some of the outcomes that we expect to see”. The trial was introduced in the October Issue of Winepress. The shoot thinning treatments were applied to 4 cane Sauvignon Blanc on a lower Wairau vineyard over November, before flowering (see table below). Mark Allen, of Allen Vineyard Advisory, thinned the ‘Grab’, and ‘Stop and Look’ treatments, and Jason Flowerday of Te Whare Ra, thinned the ‘Full Monty’ treatments.

The timing of the treatments was before the first wire lift and made for easy thinning with the shoots able to be removed by hand. The exception was the late ‘Full Monty’ which was hindered by tendrils already latching on to other shoots, requiring more use of the secateurs, and taking more time. The vine’s pruning history also influences how easy or difficult the shoot thinning is. “Good cane selection and spur placement is critical” says Jason. “Ensuring canes are spaced correctly and are not crossed over can make such a difference to both the time taken, and quality of, the shoot thinning job.” “The majority of the outward pointing shoots derived off old wood and were fruitless with only few shoots carrying small basal bunches,” says Mark. “The potential crop loss would be inconsequential as it is likely that the increased bunch exposure will enhance fruit set and reduce disease risk.” Apical dominance (photo below) is observed in many vines in the trial plot with poor bud burst in the middle of the cane. The shoots in the mid-cane tend to be the most productive. Dr Mike Trought says that by taking out unproductive shoots out of the head, the vine can divert its energy into more productive shoots and a more balanced vine will be the result.



A quick grab of outward A stop and look for pointing shoots from shoots going outwards, the head backwards and any twin shoots around the head

FULL MONTY Same as ‘Stop & Look’ plus doubles and unders on the cane

“At harvest the bunch weights of head shoot and cane bunches will be measured, almost certainly confirming that the crop loss through early shoot thinning is inconsequential,” says Chris. “We hope to demonstrate that the vines in the following season will be more fruitful and easier to prune. We also hope to demonstrate that shoot thinning enables good spray penetration in the critical period from flowering, to 3-4 weeks after flowering is completed.”

Date of thinning One side only - 18 Nov Both sides – 18 Nov

One side only - 18 Nov Both sides – 18 Nov

Early treatment - 5 Nov Late treatment - 25 Nov

Growth stage E-L16


Early: E-L12 Late: E-L18

Visit Call Chris Henry on 027 294 1490 email

Winepress January 2020 / 19


Sustainability Watch New role based in Marlborough EDWIN MASSEY

IN SEPTEMBER I took the role of general manager sustainability at New Zealand Winegrowers. I have got to know the industry over three and a half years in my previous role as New Zealand Winegrowers’ (NZW) biosecurity and emergency response manager, and have really enjoyed being part of it. I look forward to continuing to work with our members to protect and enhance our reputation and ensure our focus on sustainability remains relevant for their businesses. The general manager role has three key areas of focus: • Working with the Environment Committee to achieve the goals set out in NZW’s Environment Strategy. Primarily, this will involve delivering improvement to our Sustainable Winegrowers New Zealand (SWNZ) programme and the continued delivery of our biosecurity activities. • Being a key point of contact for regional organisations – engaging with them to help promote the diversity and authenticity of the New Zealand wine story. • Embedding sustainability across the full scope of NZW activities. The new role was created as a result of a PwC review, which highlighted that sustainability needed

to be a core value across all NZW’s activity. Sustainability is critical in terms of ensuring we can protect the places that make our famous wine. It is important that NZW demonstrates leadership in that field, and that we do so in a coordinated fashion. To reflect this change, the NZW board now has specific governance oversight over industry-wide sustainability initiatives. Our SWNZ programme has been our flagship sustainability initiative for two decades now. While it still enables us to claim a leadership position amongst the world’s different wine industries, we need to assess where we are at with it and what we can do to enhance it. This work will not only make SWNZ more useful and better for our members to engage with, but also ensure we remain world leaders in sustainable wine growing. The scorecard review project, (see page 21) which kicked off in November, aims to reshape the SWNZ scorecards around five key focus areas - people, waste, water, pest and disease, and climate change. PwC’s review also highlighted the importance of diversity for the vibrancy and sustainability of the wine industry. I am looking forward to engaging with the different regions

to find out how we can improve, what we are doing well, where the opportunities are, and how we can work together to protect our interests and help each other. The recent Regional Membership Council meeting held in Auckland on December 4 really highlighted that there is improved opportunity for collaboration and a real willingness to engage. Biosecurity is still a key part of the Environment Team’s activities. It has been helpful that Sophie Badland has taken over as biosecurity and emergency response manager. Sophie did a great job in coordinating the recent industry biosecurity week. The committee have a lot of confidence in her to continue the good work we do in biosecurity, helping to protect the industry from the impact of new pests and disease. I am keen to engage with members on all aspects of sustainability, whether that’s improvement to SWNZ, biosecurity, regional relationships or how NZW can help to further embed sustainability as a core value in our industry. Give me a call on 021 192 4924, or email Edwin.


CATCH IT . SNAP IT . REPORT IT . Call MPI biosecurity hotline 0800 80 99 66 20 / Winepress January 2020


Scorecard Review New Zealand’s wine industry needs to “refocus its efforts” to remain a world leader in sustainability, says Edwin Massey, New Zealand Winegrowers’ sustainability general manager. “As global awareness is growing, we continue to face mounting pressure from our competitors, consumers and regulators to demonstrate our commitment to sustainability.” To ensure that happens, New Zealand Winegrowers (NZW) has launched a Scorecard Review project, reducing the number of scorecard focus areas from nine to five: water, waste, pest and disease, climate change, and people. “The Scorecards are the cornerstone of the Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand (SWNZ) programme, which has protected and enhanced our reputation as a world leader in sustainability since its inception,” says Edwin. “However it’s time to change gears to help us maintain this position.” A Scorecard Technical Advisory Group (STAG), made up of growers, winemakers and other stakeholders from across the country will help enable the change. The STAG is chaired by former Waipara grower Gwyn Photo by Richard Briggs Williams, who is also a member of the NZW Environment Committee. The first STAG review meeting involved a collaborative brainstorm around the focus areas, including discussion of the need for international benchmarking of the new scorecard questions. “This benchmarking process is not about us trying to be better than everyone else in the industry for reputational purposes only, but about wanting to be the best we can be to future proof our certification programme to ensure its relevance for members.” That will require pushing boundaries through constant innovation and environmental stewardship, says Edwin. “We know it’s time to step up our game and this project is an excellent opportunity to take industry members on this exciting journey with us.”

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Winepress January 2020 / 21

Industry News Marlborough fares well in groundwater survey SOPHIE PREECE Tests on Marlborough groundwater have found little evidence of pesticides and no detection of Roundup. The National Survey of Pesticides and Emerging Organic Contaminants (EOCs) in Groundwater 2018 was presented to the Marlborough District Council’s (MDC) Environment Committee late last year, with a presentation from ESR principal scientist Murray Close. Despite a long history of intensive farming and horticulture, especially on the Wairau Plain, there had been little detection of pesticides compared to other regions, the committee heard. The herbicide terbuthylazine was detected at two of the 23 Marlborough wells sampled as part of the 2018 survey, although the concentrations were far lower than the maximum acceptable value (MAV). The two wells are shallow and located near Woodbourne and in the Omaka River Aquifer. Several other councils, including Tasman, had many more pesticide detections in ground water, according to the survey results. New Zealand Winegrowers (NZW) sustainability manager Dr Edwin Massey says terbuthlyazine, sold under a range of different brands, is a herbicide available for use by Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand (SWNZ) members, and listed in the NZW Spray Schedule. “This herbicide is not widely used in our industry. The results of this testing back that up,” he says. MDC staff stressed the need for Marlborough grape growers to be careful when using, mixing and storing pesticides especially in areas close to rivers or wells and over aquifers used for drinking water supply such as at Rarangi and most of the Wairau Plain. Edwin says NZW’s SWNZ requirements ensure these measures are part of individual member’s certification requirements. Wine Marlborough advocacy manager Vance Kerslake emphasises that the detection is not necessarily related to vineyards, as other sectors and organisations use the herbicide. ESR has been co-ordinating the groundwater survey since 1990 on behalf of 12 regional and unitary councils, checking for pesticide residue. The latest survey was conducted from September to December 2018 and, for the first time, also tested for glyphosate as well as a suite of EOCs, which are compounds from everyday items such as plumbing networks, water tanks, preservatives or pharmaceuticals which find their way into the environment and eventually drain to groundwater. Glyphosate was found in only one of the 135 wells tested (the well was not in Marlborough) and the level detected was more than 400 times lower than the World Health Organisation’s recommended health based value. The majority of the wells in the survey showed no change in the amount of pesticides present compared to previous surveys. There were detections of EOCs in 70% of the 121 wells sampled nationally, and in Marlborough they comprised of Bisphenol-A, (from plastics), Methyl paraben/propyl paraben and chloroxylenol (anti-microbial/preservative agents), dihydroxybenzophenone, oxybenzone and octinoxate (in UV sun blockers), and Sucralose (artificial sweetener). The environment committee heard that there are no human health thresholds for drinking water associated with these EOCs, but there are concerns around environmental or ecological impacts. Got a water well? Check your details The Marlborough District Council keeps a record of all water wells, some of which were drilled before 1900. In a move to make these records more accessible to staff and members of the public, council is in the process of redeveloping the database, which contains around 5,000 records. As part of this process, staff are checking the location of water wells and other key pieces of information

22 / Winepress January 2020

stored in the database, such as the depth to the water table. Council also needs the help of local well owners to complete this project. Currently, the grid references of many older wells are not accurate and it’s important council correct these records. All well owners are encouraged to check their details on the website to see if their well is in the right position and other details are correct. Visit bit. ly/MDCWells and click on the map pin to access your details. In some cases,

council may not have a record of a particular well. In this instance, please contact council to register it. If you have information for council or want to update any details, please email:

Wine Marlborough Update VANCE KERSLAKE The Recognised Seasonal Employer scheme (RSE) cap increase for 2020 was announced last year, but it comes with a catch. The wine industry needs to demonstrate that we are making the industry more attractive to locals, RSE need to show they are building accommodation, and the whole industry needs to take responsibility for our supply chains, to ensure there is no worker exploitation. Wine Marlborough is involved in this process and the long awaited RSE policy review. Wine Marlborough was heavily involved in the establishment of the Smart+Connected - Labour and Skills programme and currently chair the steering group. The programme put out a newsletter late last year, which can be found at marlborough-smart-and-connected. The Marlborough Winegrowers meetings with Marlborough District Council will continue in 2020. If you have any issues you want us to raise with council email advocacy manager Vance Kerslake at advocacy@ Vegan wine time Vegan wine is the latest in a series of eco–friendly initiatives introduced by Hunter’s Wines “Green Team”, says Hunter’s laboratory technician Rohan Shah. The Marlborough wine company’s 2019 range was produced without animal products, while the Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and Pinot Noir are vegan certified by the New Zealand Vegetarian Society. Rohan says instead of using animal-based fining products such as casein (milk), isinglass (fish) and gelatine, they are now using plant-based fining products such as pea and potato protein. The new method has resulted in cleaner and more refined wines, says Rohan. “Our winemakers are loving this new approach.” Meanwhile, cover crops have been planted in the vineyard, grape marc has been dried, stored and used as compost in the vineyards, and

the winery has a dedicated system for recycling all packaging and eliminating waste. BRI research winery manager

Plant & Food Research, working on projects in the Pinot Noir programme. She says she is “overjoyed” to be part of the BRI’s “capable and dynamic team” and looks forward to “working with industry to bring wine science research and innovation together to forge an exciting future for the New Zealand wine industry”.

Dr Tanya Rutan has been appointed as the Bragato Research Institute’s (BRI) research winery manager. Tanya is originally from the USA, but moved to New Zealand in 2003. Helping a friend out in a casual vineyard role on Waiheke Island whet her appetite for the wine industry, and she used her Bachelor of Science in biology, completed in the USA, to enrol in the University of Auckland’s wine science programme. Tanya went on to receive a Masters of Science in wine chemistry, after completing a research project in which she worked closely with the wine industry to investigate the chemical composition and sensory attributes of Pinot Noir wines produced across New Zealand. The success of the project led her to complete a PhD in Wine Science, once again working in collaboration PCL AD Winepress 2016.pdf 1 15/07/16 3:21 PM with industry on identifying the primary aromatic compounds and phenolic PROVINCIAL composition of COLDSTORES LIMITED Central Otago Pinot Noir wines. Let us take care of all your controlled Her work in the Temperature storage requirements: vineyards and ◆ Custom controlled area wineries over ◆ Approved Transitional Facility for these years led unloading of Imported Containers her to develop a passion for ◆ Over 60,000 cubic metres of storage spread over two sites. winemaking, and ◆ Chilled storage available during vintage for handpicked grapes. after graduating ◆ Sophisticated monitoring equipment ensures your product she remained is kept at the optimum temperature. in Central ◆ We could lease you a small room for your exclusive use to suit Otago, where your particular temperature requirements (0 o C to + 30 o C). she continued ◆ We store bottled wine, barrels of wine and new plants winemaking for several years. awaiting the opportune time to plant. Tanya moved to ◆ Individual rooms available to grow new budwood. the Marlborough region three years ago, where she took a role as a Old Renwick Road, Blenheim Tel: 03 578 2648 Fax: 03 578 2546 post-doctoral scientist with Gouland Road, Spring Creek. Tel: 03 570 5944 Fax: 03 570 5955 C








“the coolest place in Marlborough”

Winepress January 2020 / 23

Wine Happenings A monthly list of events within the New Zealand wine industry. To have your event included in Februarys Wine Happenings or Industry News pages, please email details to by January 20. For more information on these events, email Harriet Wadworth at harriet@wine–

JANUARY 10-12 Giesen Wines New Year Regatta 17 Applications close for Family of Twelve Wine Tutorial 30 Marlborough Wine & Food Festival Exhibitor Briefing (4pm MRC Theatre) FEBRUARY 7 Pre Marlborough Wine & Food Festival Soiree - Brancott Estate Cellar Door & Restaurant (eventfinda) 8 Marlborough Wine & Food Festival 9 Wine and Food Wind Down 2020 - Vines Village 14 Nuits Romantiques - Clos Henri ( 29 Dog Point Classic Kiwi Picnic MARCH 13 Framingham 2020 Harvest Concert 28 Whitehaven Graperide

Marlborough Wine & Food Festival - Feb 8

Dog Point Classic Kiwi Picnic - Feb 29

Whitehaven Graperide - March 28

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Boundary lines are indicative only

Boundary lines are indicative only

Marlborough 151 Guernsey Road

Marlborough 1589 Awatere Valley Road

Viticulture investment with cottage Located on a river terrace above the Waihopai River west of Renwick this is a great opportunity to secure an established younger aged vineyard in good proximity to local wineries. The vineyard is currently contracted, with the option of being contract-free at purchase.


Picturesque Awatere vineyard Idyllically positioned on the banks of the Awatere River, this vineyard was purchased in 1998 by ‘Nautilus Estate’. Well established on alluvial silt loam river terraces perfect for premium wine production, consisting of 3.24 ha of Pinot Gris, 2.31 ha of Pinot Noir, 3.79 ha of Sauvignon Blanc and 0.22 ha of Chardonnay.



Boundary lines are indicative only

Boundary lines are indicative only

Marlborough 23 Hawkesbury Road

Marlborough 130 Selmes Road

Great location with Pinot Noir! Planted in 2.1ha of Pinot Noir and 6.1ha of Sauvignon Blanc, here’s the opportunity to secure excellent volumes for solid commercial production. With Sauvignon Blanc having 4,166 vines per hectare and Pinot Noir with 5,000 vines per hectare. Lock it in now to secure the fruit for the future.


Exceptional turn-key lease Located on the highly regarded Selmes Road in Rapaura, this viticulture lease opportunity is one of the last pieces of tightly held land in this sought after area of Marlborough. Fertile soils and A class water right, this really is blue chip viticulture at its best.




NEW VINEYARDS WANTED! After multiple successful marketing campaigns last year on properties, I have buyers that have missed out on securing their property and are now actively looking for vineyards to purchase and lease. This coupled with a surge in investors it is a great time to consider making that change. If you are thinking of taking a step in a new direction or just curious about the market, call or email me to discuss in confidence how you can maximise the value of your asset. Mike Poff 027 6655 477 | BE MARLBOROUGH LTD, BAYLEYS LICENSED UNDER THE REA ACT 2008

Winepress January 2020 / 25

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Winepress - January 2020  

This issue of Winepress looks at Wine & Food Festival - The ‘godfather of fusion’, a reggae phenomenon and a sashimi master promise to be th...

Winepress - January 2020  

This issue of Winepress looks at Wine & Food Festival - The ‘godfather of fusion’, a reggae phenomenon and a sashimi master promise to be th...