Richmond Plains

Richmond Plains

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From its inception, the Richmond Plains vineyard has been tended organically without the use of synthetic fertilisers, fungicides, herbicides or insecticides.

Steve Gill Richmond Plains Winemaker

About Richmond Plains

Richmond Plains has a passionate and committed team driven by the strong belief in truly working with nature. By using organic methods to grow and nurture their vines, without the use of synthetic chemicals, Richmond Plains can naturally express the vineyard’s character in their wines, preserving the natural environment for future generations and providing a healthy choice for consumers.

Richmond Plains an 8ha family-owned vineyard near Nelson, has been certified organic since 1992 and in 2008 became the first New Zealand vineyard to carry both organic and biodynamic certification. The vineyard was also the first to produce certified organic versions of New Zealand’s signature varieties – Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir.

Eco-friendly in all that it does, Richmond Plains employs the best environmental practices in the vineyard, organically and biodynamically harnessing all that nature has to offer.  Richmond Plains has taken the initiative to follow Demeter international winemaking standards in the winery making New Zealand’s first Demeter certified wine, their Richmond Plains Pinot Noir 2010, demonstrating the depth of their commitment to marketing environmentally friendly wines.

The vineyard owned by environmental idealists Lars and Sam Jensen is a carbon sink, i.e. more carbons are being put back into the earth through compost and mulching, etc. than is being used in the production of its wines.

No synthetic chemicals are used in the making of Richmond Plains wines, so there are no residues that can find their way into the wine where it can be harmful to humans or into the environment where it can upset the natural balance.

The Monarch 2011 Rose was released in New Zealand’s lightest glass wine bottle.  At just 325 grams the bottle weighs just over 1kg full – lighter than some bottles empty!

Richmond Plains is an eco-friendly adventure that can be shared by wine lovers who cherish their health and want to contribute to caring for our planet.

It is situated at Nelson on New Zealand’s South island.

Richmond Plains was the first vineyard in the South Island to have been developed organically and has recently become New Zealand’s first certified biodynamic vineyard.

Richmond Plains is an organic and biodynamic Nelson wine making pioneer producing New Zealand’s first Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir from certified Organic and Biodynamic grapes.  We also produce Pinot Gris, Riesling, Chardonnay, Rose, Syrah and Blanc de Noir – Pinot made as a white wine.

We believe in making great wines by working with nature in our vineyard environment. By using organic and biodynamic methods we can truly express the vineyard’s character or terroir in the wines.

Richmond Plains has been growing and making organic wine since inception in 1991 and its grapes are certified by BioGro and Demeter New Zealand.

“Richmond Plains Sauvignon Blanc is consistently attractive, weighty, full flavoured, ripely herbaceous and zingy”

…“Reserve Pinot Noir is full of charm with fresh, smooth cherry – plum flavours.” – Michael Cooper, Wine Atlas of New Zealand.

Elegant cool climate wines.

Nelson, one of the new world’s finest cool-climate wine growing regions, is blessed with the longest number of sunshine hours in New Zealand. These long sunshine hours, cool autumn nights, combined with the free-draining soils of ancient river beds form ideal grape growing conditions on the alluvial plains where we live.

This temperate climate, moderated by the surrounding mountains and sea breezes of the Pacific Ocean, is perfect for producing vibrant fruit driven white wines and well-structured, elegant red wines.

We firmly believe ‘Great wines are made in the vineyard’ by working with nature to enhance our wonderful growing environment. By using organic and biodynamicmethods, without the use of synthetic herbicides, fungicides, pesticides and fertilizers we can truly express the vineyard’s character or terroir in the wines.

By not spraying to kill weeds our vineyard is rich in plant, animal and insect biodiversity. This helps the vineyard to develop a natural balance where no one plant or insect can dominate.

With no spray strip and clever companion planting our vineyard is a rich green environment creating an attractive habitat for a variety of native birds and butterflies like the Monarch and Admiral. The biologically active soil is rich in natural fertility and beneficial organisms and insects. As a bonus of this fertile environment we also enjoy harvesting a variety of delicious wild mushrooms, berries and asparagus.

We employ a mixture of grape clones and trellising including Scott Henry and Vertical Shoot Positioning (VSP) best suited to enhance the natural flavours of each wine. Extensive manual techniques are used to manage the vines, including leaf plucking, pruning, fruit-thinning and harvesting by hand.

Richmond Plains is an organic grape growing and wine making pioneer – producing New Zealand’s first Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir wine made from certified organic and Biodynamic grapes.

Our vineyard is independently Certified Organic by BioGro New ZealandBioGro New Zealand and Demeter New Zealand.

Richmond Plains, established in 1991, is a very small family vineyard owned by my wife and I, Samantha and Lars Jensen. We are located near Nelson at the top of the South Island of New Zealand. All the grapes are organically grown using intensive manual techniques to care for our vines.

‘We love working and living in harmony through the seasons. Following natures path from the bloom of spring, into the warmth of summer, through to the bountiful harvests in autumn – to produce our unique wines.’

The Koru or unfolding Fern Frond symbolises new beginning, unfolding life and growth. Just as each season brings new life to the vineyard and new wines to make, the flavours of previous wines are gently developing and unfolding as they mature.

We believe in making great wines by working with nature and enhancing the environment. By using organic methods, without the use of synthetic chemicals, we can truly express the character of vineyard or terroir in the wines.

“Learning the pleasures of living in harmony with nature and enjoying its bounty is food for the soul.”

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