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Amisfield Winery Focuses On New Spring Season

Written by Margo Berryman

Set against the backdrop of the majestic Pisa Mountain range Amis eld Winery is one of the largest single-estate vineyards in Central Otago.

The start of spring is the first day of the rest of the new year for the acclaimed winery, cellar door and bistro and Amisfield Winery’s viticulturists and winemakers have a simple mantra.

“We let nature take its course, allowing the unique terroir of Central Otago to work its magic, producing wine as pure as the place itself,” says award-winning winemaker Dr Stephanie Lambert.

Vineyard manager André Lategan and his team have completed pruning and are keeping a wary eye on early frosts and spring winds that can play havoc with buds bursting into life on the vines.

The 2018 white wines, from Chenin Blanc to Riesling, have been bottled ahead of a spring release.

Wine has become a profession and a way of life for Amisfield cellar door manager Kenny Tahuri.

“For my team and I, what is captured at the vineyard is the essence of Amisfield Farm and Central Otago.The winemaking and vineyard teams spend their whole year tending to the vines and grapes, and it’s our job to share their wine stories with the many visitors and locals who come to the cellar door.”

“We go to the vineyard once a week to connect our brand and the product, and we love nothing better than demonstrating how that comes out in what we pour in a visitor’s glass,” he says. “For me, that engagement is why what started as a part-time job while I was studying in Wellington has turned into a profession. It’s quite addictive to have the satisfaction of creating or re-creating memories for all our wine lovers.”

In the bistro, bar manager Kevin Renard, originally from France, agrees – “there’s never a bad day here,” he says. “Spring is the time to taste new dishes, assimilate those avours and create new-release wine and non-alcoholic matches. Last year’s big cocktail hit was La Vie En Rose, a raspberry and strawberry purée with Rosé, basil syrup, decorated with dehydrated strawberries.”

Stephanie says wine lovers and those in the know are anticipating the release of this year’s Pinot Noir Rosé while Pinot Noirs are maturing in their barrels, waiting to take their place
alongside Amis eld’s world-renowned vintages.

After a decade spent creating Amis eld’s wines, Stephanie is as excited as ever about the season to come.

“In spring there’s always a real sense of potential for the season and new harvest ahead. This is the start of our new year, when we’re excited about seeing growth in the new Chenin vines we planted a couple of years ago – and how Andre’s organic project is working to deliver grapes we can craft into wines of exceptional purity and intensity.”

About the author

Margo Berryman