Since 2011, our most of our vineyard has been dry-farmed.
Most of the block has not received irrigation except for very dry season. (So far we irrigated 8hours total in 2016 vintage, due to very dry early spring)
We only irrigate for the young vines to establish their root system.
We believe that there are seveal benefits, for both wine-style and environment, not to irrigate in the vineyard.
Raining pattern is one of the most important factor to shape the characteristic of vintage.
We would like to produce the wine which represent the vintage.
Root system tends to stay in the area where irrigation water is available.
To express the terroir where you grow your vine, we believe it is important to have broader root system.
When it comes to Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, thiole compounds is one of the most important factor.
It requires larger canopy, more leaves, to create more thiole. Without irrgation, our wine tends to have less thiole. This allows us to produce different style Sauvignon Blanc from this region.
According to the study by New Zealand Winegrowers, average irrigation in 2014/2015 vintage was 660L/vine. If it is a normal vineyard with 2,000 vines to the ha, it requires 1,320,000L/ha. (Most of our vineyard is planted as 4,000 vines/ha)
Dry farming can reduce significant ammount of irrigation water which normally comes from either river or from aquifer.
However there are some disadvantage of dry farming, that yeild can be variable from year to year. It is our challenge as wine producer to be sustainable in both environmental and financial.