Founded in 1887, Church Road Winery is one of the three oldest wineries in Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand and also home to Hawke’s Bay’s only wine museum. Located 15 minutes from Napier, the Church Road Winery is one of more than 150 vineyards and 90 wineries in the region, offering yet another Hawke’s Bay wine tasting experience.
My recent visit began with a tour of the wine museum. The museum includes a salute to the years pioneer winemaker Tom McDonald led the Church Road Winery to its award-winning history. McDonald is now internationally acknowledged as the father of quality New Zealand Wines.
The Church Road Winery’s Chardonnay and Bordeaux style red wines continue to achieve international acclaim by enhancing the Hawke’s Bay grapes’ distinctive fruit characteristics with complex overtones.
The wine museum is located underground in old concrete wine vats with adjoining walls. The walls are encrusted with gem-like tartrate crystals, formed as the result of tartaric acid from the wine previously stored here. The museum includes some of the oldest winemaking relics in the country, some dating as far back as 3,000 years.
After the wine museum tour, we took in the sweeping vineyard view behind the Church Road Winery, and then enjoyed lunch and a tasting in the elegant Tom McDonald Cellar, where many special events and weddings occur. We were served the Bay Platter, an amazing overflowing tray of local meat and produce from the Hawke’s Bay region! Tasty cheeses, tasty samples of local meats – wow!
Complementing the Bay Platter was a sampling of Church Road Winery’s wines: Sauvignon Blanc; Tom Chardonnay; Sauvignon Gris; Cuve Marzemino; and “Baby Tom” Bordeaux. My favorite was the Sauvignon Gris, nose of Sauvignon Blanc, cooler, crispy. Loved it!
At Church Road Winery, you can taste some of the best wine of the Hawke’s Bay region and delve into its history, enriching your New Zealand food and wine experience.
Church Road Winery
150 Church Road
Taradale, Hawke’s Bay
Ph: +64 6 844 2053
Blog © Diana Rowe
Photos Courtesy of Church Road Winery