Ohau Wines Limited
Just north of the Kapiti Coast in New Zealand’s lower North Island pioneer winery Ohau Wines is producing award-winning wines with intense fruit flavours. Ohau’s river terrace soils are similar to some of the better sites in Marlborough with a temperate climate comparable to Nelson and Hawke’s Bay.
Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc are the two signature varieties. Wines are marketed under the Ohau Gravels and Woven Stone labels. Ohau’s wines are available in many international markets including China, Malaysia, Singapore, Cambodia, The Philippines, Taiwan, Hong Kong, Japan, Indonesia and Australia
Ohau Wines has established itself in New Zealand’s newest wine-growing region at Ohau, just north of the Kapiti Coast in the lower North Island.
The Tararua Ranges provide a backdrop to the new vineyards at Ohau. Forty hectares are planted, with potential for more further up the valley.
The region is well known as an agricultural hot spot prized for its market-garden produce. For centuries the area has been shaped by the Ohau River, which has laid down deposits of gravel, resulting in a stony yet fertile soil. Warm sunshine reflects off the stones onto the vines, just the thing for producing high quality grapes and top quality wines.
The area was discovered by local viticulturist Kate Gibbs who identified that the river terrace soils were similar to some of the better sites in Marlborough. The climate is also very temperate with the degree growing days approximately halfway between Nelson and Hawke’s Bay and similar to the Wairarapa. The area has recorded minimal frost over the years, as well as low rainfall during the critical autumn ripening period.
Jane Cooper – Winemaker
A holiday visit to Hawke’s Bay in the early 1990s marked the beginning of Jane’s ambition to become a winemaker. Jane took a post-graduate diploma in winemaking at Lincoln University.
Winemaking has since taken her to Chile, the Hunter Valley and to Italy. Her New Zealand winemaking experience includes working in Nelson and at Matahiwi Estate in the Wairarapa.
Jane Cooper is regarded as one of New Zealand’s leading female winemakers. She is very excited about Ohau as a new grape-growing region and very pleased with the first vintage of wines she has made from the area.
Kate and Tim Gibbs
Kate has a Bachelor of Horticultural Science degree from Lincoln University and is recognised as one of New Zealand’s leading viticultural consultants.
Along with her husband, Tim Gibbs, Kate founded Stanmore Farm, a leading New Zealand viticulture nursery near Te Horo on the Kapiti Coast.
She has been involved in all aspects of the New Zealand wine industry for nearly 20 years, including research, consultancy, management, sales and marketing, development and nursery. Kate consults to a range of clients particularly on the production of premium wine through canopy management, development of vineyards and problem management.
Tim has a Bachelor of Engineering (Honours) (Agricultural) degree from Canterbury University and a Masters of Engineering (Environmental) from Auckland University.
Tim’s involvement in the establishment of the vineyards at Ohau includes water source analysis, design (irrigation, frost protection, drainage, shelter, layout and infrastructure), and construction management.
If you have questions for any other region, please do not hesitate to ask us.