Metro September 2006

A Vine Life?

They were particular about the land: the magnificent views of Little Barrier Island on one side and Mt Tamahanga in the distance were almost incidental. Rather, the land is the right slope, north facing; it's close enough to the sea that it gets a gentle breeze on summer afternoons, but far enough away not to get the salt.

Takatu is planted intensively, with narrow rows.

The wires that hold up the vines are close to the ground where the grapes are sheltered and absorb reflected heat from the land, thereby increasing intensity in the fruit.

Each harvest, they tenderly pick the grapes by hand, in special shallow bins.