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The first thing you’ll notice about Jane De Witt is her broad smile and carefree laugh. She eschews pretension – in wine and life – while succeeding brilliantly in both. As Lion’s Head Winemaker North Island, she leads the production of seven brands and myriad wines, dominated by sparkling production.
Steve was the first viticulturist in the world to become a Master of Wine, co-founded and steered Craggy Range for 16 years, and launched Smith & Sheth with United States billionaire and environmental philanthropist Brian Sheth five years ago.
Maddison Airey, a 23-year-old first-year Bachelor of Viticulture and Wine Science student from EIT, has won the Hawke’s Bay A&P Society & Craggy Range Young Vintners Scholarship for 2021.
When Finn Horsfield suffered a serious back injury, it spelled the end of his career as a builder. The young apprentice had to shut the door on the trade, and his attention turned to a previous dream of joining the wine industry.
“As soon as I entered this industry, I felt like I belonged,” says Holly West, after she started working weekends at the Matua cellar door during her final year of high school. “I always knew that I wasn’t going to get a corporate or desk job, I wanted a job with purpose that I was passionate about.”
For Jenny Dobson, winemaking is a lifestyle, not a job. Not only is she one of New Zealand's most accomplished winemakers, but she was the first-ever female Cellar Master in Bordeaux, France.
Brad Frederickson is the creator and winemaker behind Outside the Box Wines, an experimental brand that questions traditional winemaking. “I’ve always questioned the rigid ways that wine has been made because ‘this is how it’s always been done’,” he says. “I like experimenting to see what else is possible.”
The Roll of Fellows of New Zealand Winegrowers recognises those who have contributed substantially to the New Zealand wine industry. Whether it be through research, innovation or sustainability, their invaluable efforts and unwavering dedication have helped our industry grow and prosper.