Southern Valleys

Southern Valleys







about this subregion

Nestled in New Zealand's famous Marlborough region, the Southern Valleys, alongside its neighbors the Wairau Valley and Awatere Valleys, is a gem in the world of wine. This area isn't just a map location; it's a haven for grapes, where vineyards thrive under the nurturing touch of nature.

Imagine a place where the sun smiles warmly during the day and the cool air whispers through the vineyards at night. This is the Southern Valleys for you, with its rolling hills and fertile plains creating a picturesque backdrop. The soil here is like a patchwork quilt – a mix of clay and loam – each patch adding its own character to the grapes.

Speaking of grapes, the Southern Valleys have a knack for growing some of the best. Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay aren't just names here; they're stars that shine in this wine constellation. They soak up the unique environment, each variety finding its perfect spot to grow and develop those flavors that make Marlborough wines stand out on the global stage.

It's more than just the climate or the soil – it's the magic of the Southern Valleys. It's where nature and human passion for winemaking come together, creating something truly special. This little corner of New Zealand is not just a place where grapes are grown; it's where they're nurtured into bottles of joy.


vinerra illustration

Vineyard Hectares





Discover Terroir

Located in the Marlborough region of New Zealand, the Southern Valleys subregion features a captivating landscape defined by gently rolling hills and picturesque terrain. Nestled within this undulating topography, vineyards thrive, benefiting from the diverse terrain that imparts unique characteristics to the wines. The vineyards' strategic placement amidst the hills not only creates a visually stunning vista of lush greenery but also contributes significantly to the flavor profile of the wines produced in this remarkable part of the world. The Southern Valleys' landscape, with its harmonious blend of nature's beauty and viticultural opportunity, stands as a testament to the artistry of winemaking in Marlborough.

The climate in the Southern Valleys subregion is influenced significantly by its proximity to the ocean, which plays a pivotal role in shaping the vineyards. The coastal location moderates temperatures, creating a climate that is generally mild, with warm summers and cool evenings. This diurnal temperature variation is essential for grape ripening and the development of complex flavors. Rainfall is relatively low in the region, which not only helps to minimize the risk of vine diseases but also allows for precise control over irrigation, ensuring optimal grapevine health and fruit quality.

Additionally, the Southern Valleys receive an abundance of sunshine hours, which is crucial for grape maturation and the accumulation of sugars and flavors. This unique climate, with its delicate balance of maritime influence and favorable growing conditions, contributes significantly to the subregion's reputation for producing wines that capture the essence of the terroir with exceptional finesse and character.

The Southern Valleys subregion of Marlborough, New Zealand, boasts a rich tapestry of soil types that significantly influence the wines produced here.

1. Gravel Soils: Gravelly soils are prominent in the Southern Valleys subregion, characterized by their excellent drainage properties. These soils consist of small stones and pebbles, encouraging deep root penetration and enhancing grape concentration.

2. Clay Soils: Some areas in the Southern Valleys feature clay soils, which retain moisture and nutrients. This type of soil often results in wines with good structure and texture.

3. Loam Soils: Loamy soils, a mixture of sand, silt, and clay, are prevalent in the subregion. They offer a balanced environment for vine growth, combining moderate drainage with moisture retention, resulting in wines with harmonious flavor profiles.

4. Alluvial Soils: Alluvial soils, deposited by the Wairau River, are rich and fertile. They provide an array of nutrients and excellent water retention, promoting lush fruit flavors in grapes.

5. Marl Soils: Marl soils, composed of clay and limestone, contribute to the unique character of some vineyards in the Southern Valleys. These soils offer good drainage and the potential to impart distinctive mineral nuances to the wines.

These diverse soil types within the Southern Valleys subregion provide winemakers with a wide range of options to match specific grape varieties with the ideal terroir, resulting in wines that reflect the nuanced characteristics of this captivating subregion.


In New Zealand's Southern Valleys, a subregion of Marlborough, the vineyards are a tapestry of green, dotted with clusters of grapes that vary in color and size. Among these, Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay stand out, each with their unique needs and relationship with the land and climate.

  1. Pinot Noir: This grape is like a high-maintenance artist, requiring just the right balance of sun and shade. The Southern Valleys' cooler nights and warm days are ideal, helping these thin-skinned grapes mature slowly, developing their character. They demand well-drained soils, often thriving on the slopes where water doesn't linger around their roots.
  2. Sauvignon Blanc: The star of Marlborough, Sauvignon Blanc, is a bit more adaptable. It flourishes in various soil types, from gravelly to loamy. However, it loves the bright sunshine of the Southern Valleys, which helps in maintaining the acidity levels that are key to its growth. Regular pruning is essential to control yield and concentrate the flavors.
  3. Riesling: Riesling vines are sturdy, able to withstand some of the cooler temperatures. They require a long growing season, which the Southern Valleys generously provide. Well-drained soil is a must, and they prefer a bit more moisture compared to their vineyard neighbors. The region's cool nights are perfect for maintaining the acidity that Riesling needs.
  4. Pinot Gris: This grape is a bit of a wanderer and enjoys spreading out. It thrives in the diverse soils of the Southern Valleys, particularly in areas with good sun exposure. Pinot Gris vines need careful canopy management to ensure the grapes get just the right amount of sun and air circulation.
  5. Chardonnay: Chardonnay is versatile but has a preference for the clay-rich soils found in parts of the Southern Valleys. It needs a good amount of sunshine to ripen fully but not too much heat. This grape benefits from the cool nights of the region, which help maintain its natural acidity.

Each of these grape varieties, nurtured by the unique conditions of the Southern Valleys, reflects a deep understanding of the harmony between vine and environment. In this picturesque corner of New Zealand, the art of viticulture is alive and thriving, with each vine contributing to the region's esteemed reputation in the world of wine.

The Southern Valleys of New Zealand's Marlborough region are a cradle for some of the most delightful wines, each with a distinct personality shaped by the terroir. From the lush vineyards of this serene land, wines like Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Pinot Gris, and Chardonnay emerge, offering a symphony of aromas and flavors.

  1. Pinot Noir: This wine is a complex character, an ensemble of aromas that range from ripe cherries to a hint of earthy undertones. On the palate, it's like a dance of delicate fruitiness intertwined with subtle spices, creating a harmonious balance. Its flavor lingers with a soft yet memorable finish, making each sip a narrative of its own.
  2. Sauvignon Blanc: Imagine a burst of freshness in your glass – that's Sauvignon Blanc from the Southern Valleys. It's like a summer day encapsulated, with vibrant notes of citrus and tropical fruits, followed by a zesty, crisp finish. Every sip feels like a refreshing breeze, making it a perfect companion for a sunny afternoon.
  3. Riesling: Riesling from this region is a delightful paradox, combining sweetness and acidity in a delightful tango. It's a melody of fruity notes, often reminiscent of apples and pears, with a hint of floral whispers. The finish is usually sharp and clean, leaving a lingering taste that invites another sip.
  4. Pinot Gris: A glass of Pinot Gris from the Southern Valleys is like a soft whisper of fruits and flowers. It usually presents a blend of subtle pear, apple, and sometimes a hint of honey. The taste is smooth, almost silky, with a gentle finish that makes it both comforting and intriguing.
  5. Chardonnay: Southern Valleys' Chardonnay is a rich tapestry of flavors. It often brings a creamy texture with hints of tropical fruits like pineapple and mango, combined with a touch of oak and butter. This wine is like a warm hug; it's full-bodied and enveloping, leaving a lasting impression on the palate.

Each wine from the Southern Valleys tells its own story, a narrative woven from the unique landscape and climate of the region. These wines are not just beverages; they are an expression of the land and the meticulous care that goes into crafting them.