Urlar | Gladstone, New Zealand
Angus Thomson sold his family’s farm near Forres in Scotland in 2003, and with young family in tow, upped sticks and moved about as far away as possible to the Wairarapa region on the southern coast of New Zealand’s North Island.
It was here he planted a small farm intended to be as environmentally sustainable as possible and to be the perfect family home. Urlar means ‘The Earth’ in Gaelic and is wonderfully representative of the approach and techniques used by Angus to grow wines with true varietal expression, in harmony with the farm’s beautiful environment.
Economic and environmental sustainability are the driving principals behind Urlar winery. These practices are about giving life back to the soil and managing the vineyard as a balanced sustainable farming unit. This includes organic practices such as recycling through composts and liquid manures, (utilising their own Highland cow herd to drive the process) and increasing plant bio diversity through inter-row crops.
Using the biodynamic farming and gardening calendar, the rhythmic influences of the sun, moon, planets and stars are recognised and worked where possible. This commitment has already been recognised and rewarded when they won the Hills Harvest and Gallagher Innovation Awards.
Urlar are without doubt a winery to watch producing beautiful, clean, hand crafted wines that have not impacted negatively on the soils as they have been created.