HAMISH Rose at Wairau River Wines is not all that fussed about being at the ‘cutting edge’ when it comes to machine harvesting.
No sir. This second-generation grapegrower and winemaker in New Zealand’s Marlborough region is much more considered about how he does business.
And with almost 250ha to harvest each year efficiency ranks very highly on his to-do list.
Take the 2014 vintage.
Using his new standard Gregoire with a side arm he had his 5000-tonne harvest in the winery just before the region was hit by almost three weeks of rain.
Something he suggests he might not have achieved had he been in the vineyard with a de-stemmer.
“We are all about efficiency,” Rose says.
“At the end of the day you are growing something of quality and you only have a certain period of time in which to get it done,” he says.
“With our Gregoire it means we can go faster and we do not have to stop at the end of every row to empty – across a harvest that takes up a lot of time.
“We are 80 per cent Sauvignon and with the Gregoire we still get a pretty good sample so if the trade-off on using a de-stemmer is time then right now we are not interested.”
Rose says Wairau River Wines does have a de-stemmer in the winery and an older Gregoire harvester with a de-stemmer on it as an emergency backup but the new G8 with side arm gave us an amazing sample this year than we had seen before.
But he says in their management program quality comes first, weather second and harvest speed third.
Everything else is so far back in the field it is out of the running.
“If the weather craps out you are in trouble,” Rose says.
“Right now we try to be totally self-sufficient where possible – our own grapes, our own machinery, our own winery and our own wine,” he adds.
Full story in August’s Grapegrower & Winemaker.
Contact: Hamish Rose
P: 64 2178 1976