Think of New Zealand wine, and chances are, you're familiar with Marlborough's world-renowned Sauvignon Blancs. With so many great, crisp whites to choose from in the region, it's hard to go wrong – but that can also make it hard to know which one to choose.
One that stands out from the crowd is Yealands, one of the most coastal vineyards in New Zealand. The producer doesn't just make fantastic wine – it does so by using sustainable practices that are at its very core. Through a combination of wetlands development and conservation, as well as pest-control through inter-row planting of wildflowers, the award-winning winery aims to leave the land not just the same, but better than the way they found it.
Yealands is the only Toitū carbonzeroCertTM certified winery in New Zealand, and the first winery in the world to hold this certification since inception, making it truly one-of-a-kind. The NZ producer bales and burns their vine prunings as a renewable energy source to heat the water and glycol in the winery. Plus, the photovoltaic solar cell system installed on its roof is the largest single solar array in New Zealand.
Because Yealands looks after the land, it gives back to the winery in equal measure. The strong offshore winds and hilly vineyards (unlike most flat Marlborough vineyards in the region) contribute to the way the grapes grow, creating thick skins with intense aromas and a patchwork of flavours from vines that are on exposed ridges versus sheltered gullies.
The result is a winery that is constantly the recipient of international awards for both their wines and their philosophy. In 2018, Yealands took home the top prize for Air New Zealand Wine Awards Favourite NZ Wine Brand and the Most Successful Winery Award at the Sydney International Wine Competition, in addition to becoming the SIWC Most Successful Winery for the third time.
The next time you're at the LCBO, look out for Yealands' new labels with a "Y" and pick up a globally-acclaimed wine that does more than just taste great.