Viticulturist/General Manager (Wine Jobs: Vineyards & Cellars )

Full Time

  Decipher Group Limited

  Canterbury Christchurch, Christchurch/Canterbury

About the company

Bell Hill Vineyard was established by Marcel Giesen and Sherwyn Veldhuizen and is situated at an old lime quarry in the Weka Pass, North Canterbury, New Zealand. This is a unique site with limestone derived soils and north-facing hillside exposures. Marcel and Sherwyn, take a very hands-on, traditional approach, working in the vineyard to coax and nurture the very best possible wine from Bell Hill’s unique soil.

Bell Hill is the closest thing to a grand cru Burgundian vineyard you’re likely to get in New Zealand. There’s a clarity of purpose and a hell of a lot of hard work that’s gone into getting there. These are serious, and seriously good wines.”  Sunday Star Times.

About the Wine

Bell Hill wines are estate grown and include Bell Hill Pinot Noir and Bell Hill Chardonnay - a selective and more structural blend with earthy and complex notes for the Pinot Noir and a great expression of soil minerality as the core for the Chardonnay. These wines are selected from our older parcels and contributed to from our younger parcels as they develop over time. 

The Old Weka Pass Road Pinot Noir is from younger vines which give accessibility earlier on but still show the thread of soil influence or it may be from vineyard or winery based experimental ferments. With vine maturity, all blocks have potential to become part of the Bell Hill blends. Single Parcel wines have also become part of Bell Hill’s profile and the Limeworks Chardonnay 2016 is the first release in this phase of our offerings. Methode Traditionelle started in the early years and resumed in 2017 has now become part of our future.

Bell Hill’s wines are precise, complex, and Burgundian-influenced. They craft small batches of hauntingly beautiful Chardonnay and Pinot Noir with pristine acidity, depth and expression that rival the world’s best. Waikari teeters at the edge of where viticulture is possible. Its altitude, exposure and lime-rich soils amplify all of what makes North Canterbury special, but also all that makes it challenging. “– Wine enthusiast 

About the opportunity

Reporting directly to the Owners, the Viticulturalist/General Manager will have the overall responsibility to lead on all viticulture operations at Bell Hill. In addition, working in conjunction with the Owners, this role will advise, lead, and implement day-to-day commercial decisions and ensure the overall company objectives are met. In addition to this, the Viticulturist/General Manager will achieve success through:

  • Providing excellent operational leadership and ensuring smooth and efficient running of the company to support the Owners in their goals. 
  • Exceptional leadership of the team to ensure a positive work environment including clear and effective communication to all parties.
  • Bringing previous hands-on experience practising organics and, ideally, biodynamic practices.
  • Optimising the efficiency of vineyard/harvest staff through strong human resource management process.
  • Maintaining and improving current high standards of accurate recording and maintenance of records for vine growth, weather patterns, pest/disease control, nutrient applications, crop assessments, grape weights etc.
  • Leading a culture of health and safety within the company and ensuring Bell Hill is compliant with all relevant legislation and statutory regulations.

About you

To be successful in this role you will be a people-focussed leader and responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the Bell Hill Vineyard. As an experienced viticulturist, likely from a family owned or similar sized privately owned vineyard, you must be a passionate believer in the philosophy of wine growing and have hands-on experience in an organic site.

You may be from New Zealand or farther afield and genuinely interested in being part of a multi-cultural, hard-working team of passionate winegrowers. 

In recognition of your previous experience and commercial acumen, you will be rewarded with a competitive salary, incentives, opportunity for growth and development in a leading NZ vineyard with high-end viticulture as its core objective to add to your career path.

How To Apply

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