The Home Vineyard is located 6 kilometres north east of the Waipara Junction, in the Omihi sub-district of Waipara Valley, North Canterbury. The slope is a north facing sedimentary clay fan on a gentle hill side slope. The soils are mainly Awapuni clay loam with calcium carbonate deposits.

The vineyard was planted by the late Russell and Kimiko Black. The Pinot Noir was planted in a 3.8 ha block. Un-grafted predominantly 10-5 clone and were planted in 1994 at a vine density of 1841 vines per hectare. The vineyard was irrigated once in 1998.

The Chardonnay grows in the adjacent 3.8ha block. Un-grafted Mendoza Chardonnay vines were planted in 1994 at a vine density of 1841 vines per hectare.

Organic and Biodynamic practices have been used since 2010. Certified with BioGro.


Damsteep Vineyard (formally Spye) is located in the north east of Waipara Valley at the foot of the Omihi Saddle, 10km north of our Home Vineyard. Riesling and Pinot Noir grow here with vine density of more than 5000 vine per hectare.

Pinot Noir is grown on a 5 hectare north east facing slope, with an altitude between 140 to 180 meters above sea level. The vines here were planted in 1999 and grow on clay overlying fractured limestone and sandstone soils.
The Riesling vineyard is 2.2 ha and lies on a north facing slope below the pinot noir. The soil is in very dense brown/ orange clay and inter bedded with sandstones and subordinate limestone horizons.

Organic and Biodynamic practices have been used since 2010. Certified with BioGro.


Planted by Russell Black and Daniel Schuster in 1986 at a vine density of 5000 vines per hectare. Netherwood’s soils are classified as Waipara Greensand which is a green grey richly glauconitic sandstone.

Pinot Noir cuttings were planted here on their own roots and established and farmed without irrigation. The Chardonnay block is 0.8 hectares and was planted in 1986 on a south facing hillside. The vines are mass selection and thought to be cuttings of Mendoza Chardonnay. The vine density should be 5000 vines per hectare but half of them are Pinot Noir so it is hard to tell.

Organic and Biodynamic practices have been used since 2012. Certified with BioGro.


Estate is a
for wine.

3 organic hillside vineyards on clay limestone soils in North Canterbury.

Cellar Door
& Restaurant

614 Omihi Road
Waipara Valley
New Zealand
+64 3 314 6085
or email

10am. - 5pm Wed - Sunday

Chardonnay 2011

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Very distinctive wine that reflects its limestone-rich soils and hillside vineyard site. The wine has weight and energy with an ethereal texture that urges you to have another glass. Classy Chardonnay made with a light touch. 93 points. 5 stars.

Bob Campbell MW

Talcum powder, white flowers and white stoned fruit ...  There’s also a high level of sulfites – but in a good white Bordeaux struck match way. Linear structure, taut, focused. 93.

Rebecca Gibb

A very elegant wine with an invitingly fresh and complex bouquet, it is peachy, slightly buttery and nutty, with lively acidity and a hint of butterscotch. Showing excellent delicacy and depth, it's a drink now or cellaring proposition.

Michael Cooper MW

Light lemon straw.  Bouquet shows a lot of barrel-ferment,  lees-autolysis and winemaking artefact characters,  rather drowning the hoped-for beauty of the pure variety.  On palate there is good fruit,  high acid,  noticeable toasty oak,  and MLF and lees-autolysis characters all yet to marry up.  Hard to drink,  therefore.  Alongside the definitive Keltern wine.  Cellar 2 – 8 years.  GK 05/13

Geoff Kelly

Much more mineral on the nose than the 2010 but still very fine citrus. More spicy and savoury on the palate. Salty finish

Julia Harding MW

Big but beautiful; fresh and complex made from the hillside vineyard 

Joelle Thomson

An elegant, fine-featured Chardonnay complete with detail and power, in the burgundian style. Match with seafood, poultry, pork and veal over the next 5+ years. 

Raymond Chan


Hand harvested between 18 and 23 April 2011

Harvest 10.76 Yield=1.80 Brix 24.4 TA 8.5g/ L pH 3.20 Ton kg/vine

Hand harvested from our 3.8 ha block of 17 year old Mendoza Chardonnay vines grown on own roots in calcareous clay soils.



After a cool start to the growing season, we experienced warm settled weather through flowering.

This resulted in a good fruit set and balanced yields. Warm summer temperatures allowed even ripening and intermittent rain events prevented the onset of drought and avoided undue vine stress. The flexibility of our picking crews meant harvest could be undertaken between any autumn rand events and ensured

that the hand selected fruit reached optimum ripeness.



Whole bunch pressed, no settling, wild fermentation in 228L and 500L tight grained French casks (1-5 year old, 10% new) and maturation on lees. Full spring Malo-lactic fermentation. Blended to tank after 15 months.



Bottled in one lot under screw cap on 26 July 2012.

R. S < 1.8 g/L TA 6.9 g/L pH 3.38 Dry extract Alcohol 14% 24.6g/L

Download tasting notes