Founders and owners of Lindis River wines are French-German couple Chantal and Holger. We manage the day to day operation of vineyard and sales ourselves, ably assisted by seasonal workers and friends and neighbours at harvest time. The wine is made by Dean Shaw at the Central Otago Wine Company.
The vineyard is currently small in size (3.5 hectares or 9.5 acres) and entirely planted in Pinot Noir. It is divided into 5 small blocks, 4 of which are planted on a steep hill facing North East. The 5th block is on the valley floor by the wool shed which. The blocks are planted at slightly different angles to the sun, using the natural contours of the land.
Vines are planted at high densities, between 6000 and 10000 plants per hectare (2400 and 4000 per acre). This choice in orientation and planting contributes to the complexity of our wines. All the vineyard work is done by hand, using organic growing methods, thereby enhancing the natural biodiversity of the land, which helps control diseases and pests. No chemical fertilizers are used. Irrigation is kept to a minimum during the summer months. Harvesting is done by hand and the bunches are carefully selected.
The climate and soil
Central Otago is at a latitude of 45 degree South. The climate is dry with high sunshine hours during the growing season balanced by cool nights, due to the proximity of high mountain ranges. This of course brings the risk of frost in early spring, however it is particularly well suited for Pinot Noir, a variety that expresses its finest characters in such conditions.
The soils are predominantly sandy loam along the hillside with underlying gravels on the valley floor. Low summer rainfall and the free draining nature of the soils allow the roots to develop deep in the ground.
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