The best harvest in ten years under probably the strangest conditions. Our Marlborough vineyard and winemaking teams are absolutely delighted with the quality and quantity of the grapes they’re getting, but the smiles are mostly hidden behind face masks.
We are getting wonderfully flavourful, ripe and clean grapes coming into the winery. Even our newest vineyard, Pennarth, up in the Wairau Valley, yielded an amazing second crop of Sauvignon Blanc with sugar content at 22.5 degrees Brix and brilliant acid balance. Our winemaker Jens Merkle describes it as a dream result.
Instead of wet or cold weather, the challenge from nature this year is the blasted Covid-19 virus. Everyone still has to work, but has to wear face masks, wash their hands often and clean communal surfaces all the time, and keep their distance from each other. Instead of chatting to our people, truck drivers have to remain in their cabs. We even have to keep track of where everyone goes and who they see when they’re not at work.
Under these challenging conditions, we have people working round the clock to make sure we get this year’s excellent harvest into the winery.