Wine interns roll up their sleeves

How would you like to spend a year tending the vines of one of Marlborough’s most prestigious wine estates? If you’ve ever been to Blenheim, that idyllic little hub in the middle of New Zealand’s most renowned wine region, it would be a rather nice place to spend a year of your life. The beautiful surroundings, the kind weather, the slow pace of life, you might just find yourself staying there for life. If you can cope with the workload that is.

Two articles in the Marlborough Express have been following two interns in the industry. The first from Tauranga in the North Island, Erin Kenyon, who picked up a four-year organic horticultural apprenticeship at Seresin Estate, one of the wineries I visited back in 2008. Erin says she thrives on the variety of working with the animals and in the vegetable gardens as well as the grape vines at Seresin, which has a biodynamic philosophy.

Forrest Estate, another fabulous winery I was fortunate to visit, have Chilean man Carlos Rojas Stiven working on their internship programme aimed at encouraging graduates into the Marlborough viticulture industry. Going from Santiago, with a population of around seven million people, to quaint little Blenheim would be quite a culture shock, but there are plenty of similarities between Marlborough and Chile’s Maipo Valley when it comes to the job at hand.

No doubt this is tempting for anyone with a sense of adventure who is in the position to take advantage of such an opportunity. As well as 12+ month placements, every year thousands of people are employed by New Zealand’s wine industry to help out at harvest, which would be beginning around about now for the 2012 vintage. Better get booking those flights!

Source: The Marlborough Express

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