Nelson is the country's eighth largest wine region and
is an area of very stylish wines. Viticulture occupies
scattered pockets with a range of horticultural activities
on the alluvial loam soils of the Waimea Plains and in
the folds and valleys of the beautiful hills throughout
the district. Soil structure here changes to clay loams
over hard clay subsoil. The region is unusually sited
on the western side of the country near the northern tip
of the South Island. Mountains to the west of the region
provide a rain shadow effect while coastline helps to
moderate temperature extremes. Nelson winemakers specialise
and excel in grape varieties that respond to cooler growing
conditions. Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling and
Pinot Noir account for over 80% of the region's vineyard
The main horticultural activities take place in a geologically
formed lowlands between the Arthur Range - which hosts
some of NZ's oldest rocks - to the west and the geologically
intriguing Richmond Range on the Alpine Fault Line to
the east. The Richmond Range separates Nelson from its
slightly southerly neighbour, the country's premier grape
growing region, Marlborough.
are two distinct viticultural subregions within Nelson
- the flat, free draining, alluvial Waimea Plains in
the east on the edge of the Richmond Range and the low
rolling Moutere Hills further west..
is also emerging in the Golden Bay area, over the Takaka
Hill at the top of the Arthur Range.
there was some dabbling with vines from 1918 onwards
and Frank Berrysmith, the government viticulturist,
recorded 5 acres of outdoor vines in his 1960 survey,
Hermann Seifried is the modern founder of Nelson viticulture,
establishing his first vineyard in Upper Moutere in
back at Michael Cooper's groundbreaking work, the first
edition of "The Wines and Vineyards of New Zealand"
(1984), the statistics that he cites from 1982 indicate
there was only 39 hectares planted in vines, just 0.6%
of the national vineyard total, with only a single handful
of licensed producers.
did Cooper make a mistake when he said "Nelson
is unlikely to emerge as a major district for wine"?
For in 2001 Nelson is the country's 4th largest producing
region after Marlborough, Gisborne and Hawkes Bay.
viticulture is also characterised by style and flair.
The wine industry is relatively new here as the traditional
horticulture was based on fruit, tobacco and hops. Today
the mix is changing and your wine trail will pass olive
groves, hop farms, apple orchards and small family-owned
vineyards focusing on high quality wines.
The region has around 30 vineyards in scattered pockets
over the Waimea Plains and also in the clay gravels
and loams of the rolling hills and lush valleys of Upper
Moutere. Driving south from Nelson on S.H.6 you can
easily access a group of wineries in the Richmond and
Brightwater areas. Continuing on to S.H.60 takes you
on a convenient loop of the hilly estates via Gardner
Valley Road and the Moutere Highway.
2,500 annual sunshine hours coupled with the rain shadow
effect created by the Arthur Range to the west, and
the moderating effect of the maritime climate, provides
near perfect growing conditions.
free-draining stony soils on the Waimea plains are very
similar to those in Marlborough’s Wairau Valley,
so the structure and aromatics of the Chardonnay, Sauvignon
Blanc and Riesling wines are comparable. Nelson winemakers
have gained a fine reputation for these varieties, and
are now expanding plantings of others such as Pinot
Noir, Pinot Gris, Gewurztraminer and Shiraz.
family owned businesses welcome visitors and offer comfortable
cafés, wine tastings, cellar door sales, and
delicious lunches. Take all day to wander, and sample
the classic, handcrafted wines of the Waimea and Moutere
The Denton winery is set amongst sixteen acres
of vineyards and gardens in the hills of Nelson.
The soils in the vineyards are
free draining and naturally low yielding. The vineyards
are planted with a high density of vines and cropping
is kept very low. These conditions naturally produce
the very best quality fruit. So the winery is small, only
pressing 20 to 30 tonnes per year.
The vines are tended by hand -
leaf plucking, fruit thinning, harvest and pruning. All
wines are made and bottled on site by winemaker, Richard
Awa Awa Road, RD 1 Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 540 3555
Since the first 1989 vintage, the bold, beefy, tannic
estate- grown Pinot Noirs have attracted the most attention.
The six-hectare estate vineyard
lies in pretty, undulating countryside on a gentle, north
facing slope. In low fertility clay threaded with decomposing
rock, the Glovers have planted Pinot Noir, Cabernet Sauvignon
and Sauvignon Blanc. At five tonnes per hectare, this
is a low-cropping vineyard.
Visitors to the winery can sample
the flavour packed wines and while swirling, enjoy dramatic
Wagnerian opera. It is one of the great experiences of
the New Zealand wine trail.
Dave & Penny Glover
Gardener Valley Road
Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 543 2698
An established vineyard originally planted by Agnes
and Hermann Seifried in the early 1970's.
Twenty-six acres are planted in
five grape varieties being Riesling, Chardonnay, Pinot
Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Gew�rztraminer, all grafted
on American rootstock from plantings.
A range of Vineyard Style meals
is available with a slight Tuscan Influence.
Greg & Amanda Day
RD1, Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone: +64 3 543 2980
Facsimile: +64 3 543 2981
Moutere Hills Vineyard is a family-run winery, pressing
grapes grown on the farm, together with other top-quality
The winery is open from September
through to Easter and tastings are available with delicious
home-style platters - the perfect complement to a glass
of cool wine on a hot summer's day.
A large garden, play area and wonderful
views make a visit to Moutere Hills both relaxing and
Moutere Hills Vineyard
Simon & Alison Thomas
Sunrise Valley, RD 1 Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 543 2288
In 1978, Tim and Judy Finn planted their first vines,
creating Neudorf Vineyards. At that time establishing
a vineyard was still a "high risk" investment because
the New Zealand wine industry was in its infancy.
Today Neudorf Vineyards has an
international reputation for exceptional and fine Chardonnay,
Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling.
Tim & Judy Finn
Upper Moutere, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone +64 3543 2643
Facsimile +64 3 543 2955
Hermann and Agnes Seifried established their first
vineyard in 1973 in the Moutere Valley between Nelson
and Motueka. In 1996 they opened their new vineyard, winery
and restaurant complex at Appleby, just 10 minutes from
Richmond and 20 minutes from Nelson City.
Seifried Estate now has 80 hectares
of vineyards in the region. There are 25 permanent employees
at the winery and vineyard complex and others marketing
the wine around New Zealand and internationally.
At the International Wine Challenge
2000, Seifried's was awarded Gold with two Chardonnays.
Hermann and Agnes Seifried
PO Box 7020, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone: +64 3 544 5599
Facsimile: +64 3 544 5522
Hill Estate Vineyards and Winery
Spencer Hill Estate winery was founded in 1990. Winemaker,
Philip Jones, produced his first vintage in 1994 and since
then has received a stunning record of trophies and gold
medals, achieving international acclaim in a very short
period of time.
Traditional techniques, such as
oak aging together with the latest technology advances,
produce wines which take their place among the best.
Two labels - "Spencer Hill" from
one vineyard and "Tasman Bay" from a very select list
Spencer Hill Estate Vineyards and Winery
Philip & Sheryl Jones
PO Box 3255, Richmond, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 543 2031
Te M�nia Estate is a small, family owned vineyard
run by a husband and wife team. Only 20 acres of
vines allow "hands on" viticulture practices to provide
good fruit exposure and intense flavours.
A genuine concern for the environment
and resultant vineyard practices are designed to have
minimal impact upon surrounding environs, whilst ensuring
future sustainability of crops. Work will continue
in this direction to ensure continuance of an ongoing,
genuine claim that these wines are "The riches of a
clean green land."
Te M�nia Wines
Jon and Cheryl Harrey
Pughs Road, RD1 Richmond, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 544 4541
Estates (Nelson) Limited
Established in 1993, Waimea Estates is one of the
four largest vineyard & winery operations in the Nelson
region. Wines are made from the best sites of both
Waimea Estates and selected growers.
Yields are controlled, canopy management
is intensive. Primary focus is on growing top quality
grapes and ensuring they reach the winery in good condition.
Patience at harvest rewards with ripe and highly concentrated
fruit. The multitude of awards and accolades bear
testament to the philosophies within the winery itself.
Waimea Estates (Nelson) Limited
Trevor and Robyn Bolitho
148 Main Road Hope, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone/Facsimile: +64 3 544 6385
Andrew Greenhough & Jenny Wheeler
Patons Road, RDI, Hope, Nelson, New Zealand
Telephone +64 3 542 3886 Facsimile +64 3 542 3462