This article was created in partnership with Stoneleigh and Pernod Ricard.
Year by year, organic tipples are increasingly populating our wine aisles as New Zealanders become more conscious of their wellbeing and that of the planet. ‘Organic’ certainly has a nice wholesome ring to it… but what difference does drinking organic actually make?
The country’s number one-selling wine brand*, Stoneleigh, has introduced a new organic range comprising of Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Gris, Rosé and Pinot Noir. All the Stoneleigh Organic wines are made from grapes grown in living soil free of synthetic herbicides or pesticides. The entire range is 100 per cent organic** certified, vegan*** certified and non-GMO.
Stoneleigh Chief Winemaker Jamie Marfell says the ethos is simple: “Nature knows best. From the stone-studded soils that ripen our grapes, combined with our minimal intervention, we’re able to craft wines with lifted aromatics and fresh, fruit-forward flavours.”
Fans of natural wine claim that cultivating grapes this way - in pesticide-free vineyards and untilled, pesticide-free soil where the various organisms naturally work in tandem with one another - lends the wine a bright, alive flavour. There are otherwise no noticeable flavour differences from conventionally produced wine, and organic wine is certainly just as high in quality. What’s more, because the vines are grown in living soil with minimal intervention, Stoneleigh Organic is the brand's pure expression of Marlborough and a true reflection of the natural flavour of the grapes.
You can raise a toast to its environmental benefits too; because the practice is pesticide free, no chemicals are leached into the soils and waterways, meaning a safer home for bees and other beneficial insects. And thanks to the absence of fossil fuel-based fertilisers, the soils can absorb and store more carbon, making the whole vineyard an unusually effective carbon sink.
So all in all, organic wines work out as a great planet-friendly, sustainable choice...and to help you test them out, scroll down to read about the flavours you'll find in these sustainable sippers and what they pair best with.
What they taste like and what to drink them with
Sauvignon Blanc 2020
Powerfully aromatic, with intense passionfruit, capsicum, fennel and white pepper notes. Punchy flavours of citrus and green herbs complete this lively wine, sitting on vibrant fruit acids, and leading to a persistent finish.
Try it with...cured meats, soft cheeses, fresh salads and seafood to mild curries.
Pinot Noir 2019
Aromas are savoury with dark fruits nuances. Blueberries, figs and raspberry compote are complemented by toasted vanilla and allspice. The wine has a persistent finish of rich fruits. The palate is medium bodied with fantastic tannin structure, and the fruits are joined by dark chocolate and mocha flavours. The wine has a persistent finish of rich fruits.
Try it with...aged gruyere, smoked salmon pasta, slow-cooked beef cheeks, grilled foods or dishes with smoky flavours.
It opens with a burst of juicy red fruit aromas, of strawberry, cranberry and raspberry sorbet which carry through to the palate. Vibrant acidity is enhanced by a creamy texture and notes of vanilla pod. The wine culminates in a mouth-watering finish with hints of white peach.
Try it with...warm goat’s cheese salad, fresh crab with lemon butter, Asian dishes such as hoisin pork and crunchy slaw to fresh fruit.
Pinot Gris 2020
Fragrant aromas of crunchy pear and apple skin with a hint of rosehip. The medium-bodied palate is brimming with more joyously juicy orchard fruits, and as the wine opens, hints of spice, dried figs and citrus peel emerge.
Try it with...fresh, simple dishes or salty aperitifs like olives, feta or halloumi. For something a little richer, try grilled pork loin in Dijon mustard and crème fraiche sauce.
Enjoy Stoneleigh wines responsibly.
Stoneleigh Organic wine range is available to purchase now from leading New Zealand liquor stores and supermarkets nationwide with an RRP of $19.99.
*Source: IRI NZ Grocery #1 by RSV, MAT to 6 SEP 2020
**Certified 100% Organic BioGro New Zealand
***Certified 100% Vegan UK Vegetarian Society