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Gordon Russell

Esk Valley Winemaker

 

Gordon has established himself as one of New Zealand's most recognised winemaking identities with his passionate approach to winemaking, and the enormous success he has achieved with his wines in tastings and competitions.

Born in New Plymouth, New Zealand, Gordon’s desire to travel took him to England and Europe for three years after university. He had always been interested in different flavours and trying new food so during his time abroad he naturally also developed an appreciation for fine wine.

In 1986 Gordon returned to New Zealand, just when the wine styles for which New Zealand has become highly regarded were beginning to emerge. Gordon was appointed as Esk Valley winemaker in 1993, after working for Villa Maria in Auckland as a cellar hand from 1987 and then as assistant winemaker to Grant Edmonds at Esk Valley from 1990.

Gordon strives to make wines that tell the story of the vineyards from which they came. Experience has taught him that with attention to detail in vineyard, the winemaking process becomes simple and a hands off affair. Esk Valley’s aim is to produce a natural style of wine utilising wild yeast and long term lees ageing. These are modern styles of wine made in a hand crafted manner.

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Awatere Valley