As the New Zealand wine industry is slowly maturing, kiwi wine icons such as Sir George Fistonich of Villa Maria and Allan Scott are starting to take a step back and are passing on their knowledge and experience to the next generation.
Iconic Nelson producer Neudorf recently followed suit, announcing that their daughter “Rosie takes the reins at Neudorf Vineyard”. It’s an exciting shift in an ever-developing industry which no doubt comes with exciting new ideas, tons of enthusiasm and a clear eye to the future.
We were keen to find out more about the Rosie, her new role and the future at Neudorf and are excited to share our Q&A with her today…
Hi Rosie! What’s your new role?
My email signature says “International Marketing and Sales Director” but it could probably read “A Little Bit of Everything.”
What does a typical working day look like for you?
I like to get into work early, go to Tim and Jude’s for a coffee and a catch up about any emails or jobs that may have come in from customers over night. My morning is spent clearing emails and touching base with distributors.
Morning tea is a pretty vital part of the Neudorf day. Everyone comes together from the Vineyard, Winery, Admin. We’re a small company and it’s a good time to catch up with what is going on outside of my computer. Chat usually quickly migrates from wine to sports.
The afternoon is usually more project based, web updates, collateral design, sales meetings and a good day will have a wine tasting to finish on.
What sets Neudorf wines apart from other New Zealand wineries?
Honestly… a really tight team of people. There is a hell of a lot of focus, intelligence and integrity topped off with an excellent dollop of humour. We have an exceptional piece of dirt and some wonderful fruit but for me it is the people that make it Neudorf.
What’s your most memorable wine moment to date?
Coming up from cave diving the Riwaka Resurgence (6 degrees, pitch black, unadulterated caving system) to thank my instructor I took him a bottle of Tom’s Block Pinot Noir and the other guy brought some wild venison steaks he’d shot prior.
Being the solid kiwi bloke that he is, our instructor had a bbq plate in the back of the truck, so we grilled the venison, found some plastic cups in the truck and ate what felt like a banquet. Fingers have never been so cold, tummy so full and wine so good.
If you were a wine, what wine would you be?
Easy, I already am a wine… Neudorf Rosie’s Block Chardonnay. Jancis Robinson once called it: “Super-refreshing. Youthful but already drinkable. Medium weight; carries its alcohol well.” I’ll take that.
Wine & dine, what’s your favourite match?
Three weeks ago I would have said chablis and fresh oysters or something classic.
However recently I was lucky enough to taste smoked beef fat chocolate brownie (not kidding), with hazelnut dacquoise & cocoa nib gelato… designed by genius kiwi chef Jethrow Vincent (instagram @chefjethrowvincent) based at Bikini in Bali.
It was served with Pinot Noir and it was a palate explosion. I don’t have a sweet tooth but it was unforgettable.
Share a fact about yourself that only a few know
I have an unhealthy obsession with MasterChef Australia, especially any baking challenges. I have been known to attempt recreating the croquembouche challenge, love-making anything in a dome mould and once had a dream that George Calombaris told me I was wasted in the wine industry.
Things you still want to do – what’s on your bucket list?
Dive Million Dollar Point in Vanuatu, spend the weekend drinking champagne in Paris with my girlfriends (again), taste The Original Crack Pie from Milk Bar in New York…. Look it up.
Dead or alive, who would you like to share a glass of vino with?
Grace Coddington (ex-creative director at Vogue, bff of Anna Wintour, general fashion legend) and Keith Richards (random guitar player, bff with Mick Jagger).
Thanks Rosie and all the best for your new role!
Also make sure to check out our Q&A with Todd Stevens, Neudorf’s winemaker.