Greywacke (pronounced Greywacky) is the Marlborough label of the Judd family and the name of New Zealand’s most abundant bedrock. These understated grey river stones are found throughout Marlborough’s rivers and alluvial vineyard soils. Established in 2009, Greywacke is truly a family affair and while the company now exports its wines all over the world, the ethos is very much ‘keep it simple and hands-on’ with a small, dedicated team running the company from Greywacke HQ in the heart of Marlborough’s Omaka Valley. The fruit is sourced from mature vineyards in prime viticultural sites to optimise the potential afforded by Marlborough’s sunny South Pacific climate.
All vineyards are sustainably managed with substantial and increasing proportions coming from organically farmed sites. Crop levels are restricted to enhance concentration of flavour and a long, cool growing season produces fruit with incredible varietal intensity and bright natural acidity. Meticulous canopy management regimes are employed to provide sufficient fruit exposure to deliver ripeness of flavour, textural richness and optimum acid balance. Greywacke is accredited with AMW status (Appellation Marlborough Wine) ensuring provenance, authenticity and integrity.
Each variety is grown and vinified using techniques aimed at achieving very specific wine styles, with a common objective of delivering concentration of flavour and a harmonious balance of texture and acidity. Minimalintervention winemaking is adopted to create wines with personality and individuality, aiming for subtle, ripe, delicious-drinking styles. Wild (indigenous) yeast fermentations are used extensively to incorporate savouriness to the flavour profile and build on the structure and intensity of mouthfeel.
The Greywacke range is primarily based on two varieties, sauvignon blanc and pinot noir; the sauvignon being produced in two distinctly different styles. Limited releases of chardonnay, riesling and pinot gris complement the line-up. Kevin’s signature vineyard photographs provide the distinctive identity of the Greywacke labels.
Kevin Judd is one of Marlborough’s pioneer winemakers whose career is intrinsically linked with the global profile of New Zealand wine. Kevin was born in England and grew up in Australia, where he studied winemaking at Roseworthy College and first made wine at Reynella in South Australia.
He moved to New Zealand in 1983 and joined Selaks Wines. Subsequently, he became the founding winemaker at Cloudy Bay, a pivotal role during which he directed the company’s first 25 vintages. In 2009 he established Greywacke, his own family wine company, named after New Zealand’s prolific bedrock.
Alongside winemaking, Kevin has developed a parallel career in photography. For over two decades his evocative images have appeared in countless publications worldwide. His first book was the The Colour of Wine, a photographic essay on the vineyards of Marlborough. His second book The Landscape of New Zealand Wine was published in 2009 to considerable acclaim.
Kevin and Kimberley live in the Omaka Valley overlooking Marlborough’s picturesque vineyards, the inspiration for both his passions.
Born and raised in Nelson, Richelle’s family belong to a confederation of iwi that have centuries-old connections to the land of Te Tauihu (Māori: top of the South Island). This confederation has a long-standing history in agriculture and fishing, and more recently in winemaking and viticulture, a tradition
Richelle is proud to continue. Richelle studied exercise science in Christchurch and then headed off to Switzerland on a quintessentially Kiwi O.E. (overseas experience). While working and travelling in Europe, Richelle developed a love for wine and upon returning home, she enrolled at Lincoln University to study winemaking.
After graduating from Lincoln, Richelle jumped the ditch to work an Aussie harvest at St Hallett in the Barossa Valley, but the pull of Aotearoa lured her back to Marlborough where she joined Spy Valley and was soon responsible for their pinot noir and chardonnay production.
Richelle joined the Greywacke team in May 2021, where she manages the winemaking programme, as well as travelling to the markets to conduct tastings and spread the word on all things Greywacke. Richelle firmly believes in minimal intervention winemaking and that wine should express its turangawaewae (Maori: a place to stand). Her special vinous passion is pinot noir and the hillside terroir of Marlborough’s Southern Valleys holds a very special place in her heart.
Born in Marlborough, Alex was raised among the vineyards of Rapaura, totally surrounded by a world of viticulture and winemaking. From an early age Alex had a love of food and beverage and from his high school years he worked part-time cooking in kitchens and at events, steadily advancing his knowledge and developing a deep passion for food, wine and all things hospitality. Alex moved to Wellington to study commerce in 2011 and quickly became immersed in the New Zealand specialist coffee scene, honing his craft over 5 years as a barista at Memphis Belle, one of New Zealand’s most iconic cafes.
In 2016 Alex headed back in the direction of wine, joining the team at Noble Rot Wine Bar and working under the tutelage of sommeliers Maciej Zimny and Joshua Pointon, learning and defining his palate through in-house sommelier programmes and WSET. Furthering his experience in the wine world, Alex then moved to wine sales, joining Great Little Vineyards as account manager for the Lower North and Upper South islands.
In 2019 Alex returned home to Marlborough to plunge himself in the production side of the industry, joining the Greywacke winemaking team and embarking on a journey to discover the intricacies of the Marlborough Terroir. Alex has a love of textural white wines, in particular Chardonnay, and enjoys delving into the vagaries of wild yeast fermentation and the complexities that can be achieved with various barrel ageing regimes.