Our Philosophy


Balance in all things

The vision at Te Motu is simple: to produce wines that express the unique terroir of Onetangi Valley and continue to evolve and improve with age. To this end, it is important that vineyard and winery practices work towards balance at all stages.

Using only the highest quality fruit, harvested at optimum ripeness, affords a lower intervention, crafted approach. The belief is: the more a wine is handled before bottling, the more is taken from the finished wine. Most years, crops are green harvested to achieve physiological ripeness at relatively moderate alcohol levels.

Berries are hand harvested from low-­yielding vines, and gently de-­stemmed (not crushed) within 15 minutes of harvest. Wines are matured in barrel for twelve to eighteen months depending on the cuvee and the needs imposed by the vintage. Barrels are sourced from a diverse range of the best French coopers to enhance the complexity of the blend. The percentage of new wood used varies depending on the ripeness, weight and extract of the wine ­ as defined by the vintage.

The Te Motu flagship wine is a Cabernet Sauvignon dominant blend with Merlot, Cabernet Franc and Malbec. The blend varies from year to year and on average only 4500 bottles are made in each vintage. Each constituent variety is aged separately in its barrels, which are tasted after about 12 months, to determine which shall be drawn off, leaving the best to mature another six months before being bottled as Te Motu. Typically, Te Motu is bottle aged a further three and a half to four years before being released.

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