Family 2
Early days, Rob, Gerdi, Nico and Joey
Our Story
In August 1986, Rob set his eyes on Chard Farm for the first time.
After studying winemaking in Germany in the early 80’s, a chance encounter with a cousin who worked on an orchard called Chard Farm, near Queenstown piqued some interest in Central Otago. I ventured down there and ended up running the farm as an orchard.
Sitting, overlooking the property one gorgeous, balmy Central Otago evening, I had an epiphany. I could see it all - the farm as a vineyard, laid out before me.
My father was quickly summoned, along with his chequebook! and the start of establishing the vineyard first began.

There were a lot of doubters however!

In the beginning, the advice was simple - "Don't be stupid, best not to plant anything down there at all!"
There was a huge sense of community then - friends, family and locals all rallied together and were used and abused, to plough, dig and plant the first vineyard. Gerdi arrived on the scene! I am sure they all loved the work, probably though with a sense of foreboding, concern and sympathy for the unlikely success of this venture.

I remember also in the early days, a particular wine critic who, I assume would rather remain anonymous, commenting, "If Central Otago wine producers believe they can create high-quality wines, they are seriously deluding themselves."

The rest as they say is history.
Team Chard
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