Single Vineyard Wines of Central Otago
Zephyr | New Zealand, Central Otago
The Glover family were one of the first to plant grapes on their farm in Marlborough’s Dillon’s Point sub-region in 1988. Nineteen years later, led by eldest son Ben, the family launched Zephyr, a range of single-vineyard wines from the farm. The name Zephyr means ‘a gentle breeze’. Inspired by the prevailing wind that moderates their vineyards, it is the perfect fit for the Glover family. Never still, always on the go, always innovating and planning their next move on the farm, in the wines and with the family.
The family farm runs alongside Marlborough’s Opawa River and over four generations were home to a successful dairy operation. Owen Glover dedicated much of his life to developing a revered pedigree Friesian herd. But after realising his four children had no interest in getting up at 5:00 am to milk cows, Owen and Wendy looked over the fence. Inspired by the pioneering efforts of some other Marlborough mavericks, they opted to swap out milk for wine, selling the herd and converting the paddocks to vineyards. They had a feeling their Dillon’s Point land had the potential to produce world-class wine, and this new venture might mean an end to early mornings.
Today, rows of Chardonnay, Gewurztraminer, Riesling, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc have thrived in the fertile loam soils that provide Zephyr wines with lively aromatics, great depth of flavour and excellent structural longevity.
Aspect and Soil
The soils of Zephyr’s vineyards are fertile, the aspect is north facing and the sub-region is described as ‘early country’, sheltered from the harsh southerly weather patterns, sitting in the lee of the Wither Hills to the south-east of the Wairau Valley floor.
Their vineyard is only three kilometres from the high tide mark and is approximately 10 metres above sea level. Being close to the sea, in some years they see a very unique flavour profile in some of their wines. There is a distinctive umami note, a salty influence that creates a unique sense of place from this single vineyard site.
The soil structure is Kaiapoi silt loam. It has a fertile soil profile, which borders the Opawa river. As you move north, away from the river, the soils become more clay loam in structure.
The River and its Influence