Nelson Wine in 2020: A Cracking Year for Growing Grapes

You could be forgiven for thinking that 2020 is a year best forgotten. However, there have been positives, especially when you consider how these strange times have brought out a little extra kindness in Aotearoa. 

What is more, if you love wine as much as we do,  you’ll be delighted to hear that 2020 was a superb year for growing grapes. In fact, 2020 is promising to be a very special vintage indeed. 

The long, hot Nelson summer of 2020 blessed us with the bounty of a near-perfect harvest. The beautiful, clean fruit was finished off perfectly by our cooler evenings. That meant rapidly rising sugar levels and complex flavours in the fruit — the type of elegance and finesse that winemakers dream about. All we had to do was pick the grapes!  

The long hot days were followed by cool nights, conditions perfect for fully ripe fruit and complex flavours – a winemakers’ dream. Mother nature having done her job, we quickly needed to pick the grapes. 

Lockdown and restricted working conditions upon us due to Covid-19 made for worrying times. Fortunately, the Government agreed with us that wine is essential and our ‘essential’ team kicked into action. With a diminished work force and new regulations in place to keep everyone safe, time was against us. It truly was a sterling effort on behalf of our fantastic hard-working growers and their teams who have our sincere gratitude.’

The result is some truly beautiful wines that are drinking very well. This might even be the year to stash some bottles away for later. 

As our director, David Barrett, says, “This is a sensational vintage that will age well. A few bottles of 2020 will make a great addition to your cellar — if you can resist drinking them!”

For Nelson wine, it is brilliant to have another great vintage on the back of 2019, which was also an exceptional year for our region. This could be our time to shine, with reduced volumes of imported wines due to freighting issues, and a growing awareness of the quality wines that Nelson has to offer. 

In 2020 it has been wonderful to see New Zealanders coming out in force to support local producers — by buying online, directly from the winemakers. It really does make a difference to our ability to keep staff in their jobs. So, thank you! 

As New Zealanders settle in to enjoy Christmas with family and friends, we would like to extend our warm thanks for your support this year. We raise a glass to all our loyal customers and wish you all a safe and Merry Christmas. 

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