The first biodynamic estate in New Zealand (and the first in the Southern Hemisphere to gain Demeter certification), James and Annie Millton have been growing wine in Manutuke on the banks of the Te Arai river in Gisborne since 1984. Farmed from inception in this manner, it was built on the backbone of family winegrowing in the area, with both James and Annie's parents having vines in what is now known as "Opou" and "Riverpoint". The Clos de Ste. Anne is a single vineyard situated on steep north-facing slopes in the foothills of Poverty Bay. The grapes are all hand harvested and fermented with indigenous yeasts present in the vineyard. The estate is mostly known for their Chenin Blanc - a benchmark for the country - but they also grow wonderful Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Viognier, Gewurztraminer and Riesling.
"Typically scented, with rich, lemony, often honeyed flavours, this is the country's northernmost fine-quality Riesling. Harvested from Gisborne vines of varying ages – the oldest planted in 1981 – it is gently sweet, in a less racy style than South Island wines. The grapes, grown in the Opou Vineyard at Manutuke, are hand-picked over a month at three stages of ripening, usually culminating in a final pick of botrytis-affected fruit."
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