Project Description

The Clos Marguerite Story

Jean-Charles and Marguerite Van Hove bought the land in the Awatere Valley to create this boutique operation in 1998. Jean-Charles, a graduate of Bordeaux University with a particular interest in soil science, worked first in Bordeaux, before he and Marguerite moved to New Zealand in 1996. He worked for a number of years as a viticulturalist while planning and planting his own estate.  He and Marguerite are now fully occupied in running the estate. It’s unusual to find a family-run estate of this size in Marlborough. On her last visit here last year, Marguerite told me that Clos Marguerite, with its ten hectares, is the smallest estate in the area to be making its own wines in its own winery. The model is very much European in style, and the wine styles too, both Sauvignon and Pinot.

Watch a short video on the Pinot Noir harvest in 2020 with comments by winemaker Jean-Charles Dubois (April 2020):

Clos Marguerite Wines

The estate covers 10 hectares. It was planted in 2000 in the Awatere Valley, close to the river, on free-draining gravel over mudstone, with occasional patches of loess.

The winery was built in 2005. Production is small, entirely from the estate’s own fruit, with yields of 8 tonnes per hectare – well below average for the area – and a low extraction rate of 65 litres to 100 kg. They follow the ecological principles of the “Sustainable Winegrowing of NZ”. In making the Sauvignon, most is whole bunch pressed, with about 30% destemmed and crushed before pressing. Fermentation is cool: 12-15 C with several months on fine lees before bottling at the end of winter. The 2014 vintage stood up very well when we first blind-tasted it against other better known names, and we have not looked back. Every year we admire its rich but understated character (by Marlborough standards!). It is also completely dry, unlike many of the more commercial examples available.

A small quantity of Pinot Noir is also produced and we are pleased to have some on our portfolio. This receives a cold soak for a week before a short fermentation at 30C with hand ‘pigeage’, and then another week on skins post fermentation before running off into second and third fill barrels where it stays for 12 months.


Code Description Year
MASBK19B Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2019


Code Description Year
MAPIN15B Marlborough Pinot Noir 2015