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Spring Planting 2012

Christin, Sandra and Frederike planting
Christin, Sandra and Frederike planting

The vineyard is alive with the beautiful soft green glow of fresh new growth! It’s the perfect time of year to instigate our vine replanting program replacing any vines throughout the vineyard that have succumbed over the last season. Sandra, Steven and the team are very busy planting approximately 1700 new grafted Pinot Noir clones which arrived just last week from our suppliers, having been cool stored and then soaked to bring them out of winter hibernation. Johner Estate is densely planted, this being one of our signatures of quality, ensuring vines strive to reach the high flavour concentrations Karl Johner desires. The procedure with new planting is as follows. Firstly Steven and Moritz mark the location of new vines (with flourescent orange spray paint!), Dale uses a digger to create the holes, Robert improves the holes by hand and Sandra, Christin and Friderike follow planting the vines tenderly amongst soil (rocks are removed). The new vines are staked, secured and enclosed with a plastic vine guard creating a protected moist environment in which they will thrive. Steven is regularly watering the new vines to help them establish in what is proving to be a glorious warm spring.

New vine in 'vine guard' microclimateRobert digging

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Wellington Food Show 2012 Stand 304

Wellington Food Show
11 – 13 May 2012

Karl Johner, Steven Bates and the team from Johner Estate will be offering a delicious range of tastings (generous as always!) at stand number 304.

This year, we are proud to have Stefan, a Master of Wine (MW) student to introduce the wines to you.

We have a superb ‘Special Tasting Experience’ which you won’t want to miss and all sorts of other surprises at the event including customized cases and a super Pinot Noir offer. We will look forward to seeing you there!

Of course if you cannot make it along to the Food Show in Wellington, Rosalie would love to see you at Johner Estate Vineyard where you will be sure of a fun and informative tasting hour…. or two!

Do contact us if there is any further information you would like regarding the Wellington Food Show or Johner Estate.

Phone: 06 370 8217

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It’s a challenging harvest.

The year has been cooler and more difficult than in other years. The real challenge is getting in ripe grapes with flavours and structure.
The most important aspect is picking out the ripe grapes by hand and then sorting them in the vineyard, before they are dropped into the bucket. As we also pick our late harvest noble grapes at a later stage from the same vineyard, no machine harvester can substitute our hard working pickers. The Sauvignon Blanc grapes couldn’t quite reach our desired ripeness levels of pure tropical fruit flavours. The grapes were too fragile to leave them longer outside, as the Botrytis was starting to spread out. So we just picked the best ones out by hand. These grapes have nice flavours of gooseberry, grapefruit and sometimes peaches. As you can imagine, the crop is smaller, and we will have a shortage of Sauvignon Blanc. We will see if we are able to produce a Sauvignon Blanc Ouvertüre (our Primeur for the German market) … but probably not…

We have also been busy picking Pinot Noir. A part of it has been pressed off as a Blanc de Noir and will be bottled as a Methode Traditionelle.

We are also proud to be able to pick wonderful ripe Reserve Pinot Noir.






During redwine fermentation, where the juice ferments together with the skins, tannins and colour are extracted from the skins. Unfortunately the fermentation gases raise the skins so they float on top, and are not leeched out by the fermenting juice. So intense punch down is needed to mix up the skins with the juice. The total time on skins ranges between 2 and 4 weeks depending on the wine.

The quality from this very cool year is surprisingly good with dark flavours, intense colours and a great structure on the palate.

If you are interested in what it tastes like, please just visit us during harvest and we can give you a sample to taste.

As the harvest ends in about 2 weeks time, the first ferments show results beyond expectation.

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Evening session with Karl at the Wairarapa Wine Cellar in Greytown

On Friday 15th the first evening session at the Wairarapa Wine Cellar was held. This successful event saw Karl speaking to a large group of wine enthusiasts about selected wines from the local boutique wine growing areas. The entertaining and informative talk was only interrupted for the enjoyment of Greytowns’ Cuckoo pizza. The pizzas did a great job of complementing the wines that were tasted.
Karl spoke about the special terrior north of Martinborough that created elegant and different flavoured wines. He was entertaining and many thoroughly enjoyed his passionate outlook on making wonderful wine.
One group of ladies that attended said that they were fascinated on Karls’ blind tasting stories and they particulary liked learning about the sensory components within the wine.
It was great that everybody felt comfortable in sharing what they liked whether it was the fruit flavours or the linguring after taste.
We were fortunate to have other wine makers happy to mingle with the crowd. Wine stories were shared and every one was well looked after. Many were happy to stay on after Karl had finished his presentation. From the feed back on the night this will be the first of many successful evenings at Greytowns’ Wairarapa Wine Cellar.