Wednesday, September 23, 2009

Still the sun shines – long may it last! The vines are looking great.
Great sunsets too!

The bottling mentioned in the last post went really well, and even after allowing for bottling shock the wines look very promising. We have sent samples off to export customers so they can decide on future requirements. Their feedback is vital in helping plan for the future, in particular, when allocating the small volume premium wines.

Now the barrels that were emptied for the bottling run need to be cleaned before we put the rest of the 2009 vintage in them. So I thought it would be interesting to show you some shots of them being steam cleaned.

Monday, September 14, 2009

Well, the fine weather continues. Another lovely day and the chardonnay is racing away. The driveway is now finished, and looks great.

It will certainly make the winery a more popular destination for functions and weddings; as well as simplifying road maintenance (no more potholes) and no more dust nuisance.

Carl was loading the wines for bottling today. He started filling the tanker at 4.00am, so he could have the wine at the bottling plant ready to start at 8.00am. It was all over by 6.00pm and the wine now all bottled and cartooned ready for sale. We will be getting the samples off to our export customers asap, so they can finalise their requirement.

Sunday, September 6, 2009

Bud Burst 2009

A stunning day here today - warm and dry. And, we have bud burst which is great, but about two weeks earlier than anticipated. With bud burst the cycle starts all over again – it is very exciting, and now we’ll watch over the vines as the grow foliage and then grapes!

Meantime, for the next 3 or 4 weeks, all we have to do is worry about frost! We had two severe ones yesterday and today, both reaching minus 5 degrees C, which had all the Martinborough wineries running their frost machines, flying helicopters, lighting their frost pots and anything else that they can do to avoid risk of frost damage. Fighting frost is an incredible task, and very interesting – if you want to know anything about it, drop us a note at

We use water sprinklers on our Waiata block, and in the morning the frozen water is a beautiful sight. At our Blue Rock vineyard the sloping ground protects from frost. Why? Because frost behaves water, and so runs off sloping ground. We are very fortunate to have the only large vineyard in Martinborough planted on a hillside. Not having frost risk on our largest block is a very valuable benefit, and saves tens of thousand of $’s each year.