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News | News

Finding the Perfect Food and Wine Match at The Food Show Christchurch
Chelsea Winter at The Food Show Christchurch

The Christchurch Food Show which took place from Friday 8th April to Sunday 10th April proved to be the perfect match for Waipara Hills as the official Wine Sponsor of the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre.
 
9,439 visitors over three days arrived at the Horncastle Arena, to sample their way through a diverse range of food and beverages, and get inspiration and tips from celebrity chefs.

At the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre, eight of New Zealand’s top chefs, cooks and culinary authors including Josh Emett, Ray McVinnie, Annabelle White, Chelsea Winter, Sachie Nomura, Robert Oliver, Emma Galloway and Jonny Schwass, shared some of their favourite recipes. The audience enjoyed watching the chefs bring their dishes to life, which were then matched with a wine from Waipara Hills.  The Waipara Valley is a leading region for aromatics in New Zealand. Our wines are bursting with complex flavour making them the perfect food accompaniment.

Food editor, columnist and acclaimed chef Ray McVinnie demonstrated his classic style with a combination of fruit, bright mint and rich coconut cream which was nicely cut through with the Tahitian lime and mandarin characters of the 2015 Waipara Hills Riesling.

Ex-Masterchef judge and former Gordon Ramsay right-hand-man Josh Emett created his superb sticky pork hock hawker roll, a combination of pork, star anise, ginger and soy. The dish was perfectly balanced with the weighty 2014 Waipara Hills Equinox Chardonnay.

     

Following each demonstration, the crowd from the cooking theatre flocked to our nearby Waipara Hills stand, eager to taste the wine they had just seen featured on stage. Our team was on hand to take them through the three ranges; Waipara Hills, Equinox and our cellar door exclusive Soul by Waipara Hills, to discover the different flavours and textures.

“It is a delight to answer questions about our wines and to see people trying something new, especially our Waipara Valley aromatics. So many people wanted to learn about the different wines, and often walked away with a new favourite.” said Jenny Anderson, Waipara Hills Cellar Door and Café Manager.

The 2015 Waipara Hills Rosé was the crowd favourite at the tasting stand followed closely by the 2015 Soul Mound Riesling, both sold exclusively at our cellar door. The Rosé delights with flavours of strawberries and cream and has a lovely crisp finish. The Mound Riesling is a sweeter style with flavours of citrus and mandarin. It is beautifully tight with a refreshing spritz, cementing the fact the Waipara Valley is a leading region for aromatics in New Zealand. 
Waipara Hills at the Wellington Food Show
The Wellington Food Show
Waipara Hills is delighted to be the Official Wine Sponsor of the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre this year at the Wellington Food Show. 
 
See Waipara Hills wines in the Whirlpool Cooking Theatre where their award winning aromatic wines have been matched to celebrity chefs' dishes. 


The Food Show Wellington 2015
Fri 4 Sept – Sun 6 Sept 2015
Westpac Stadium

See www.foodshow.co.nz for ticket detials
Wine Of The Show and Two Trophies at New Zealand Aromatic Competition
NZ Aromatic Competition
It was a trophy haul for Waipara Hills at the New Zealand Aromatic Wine Competition on 7th and 8th October.
 
The 2017 Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rosé was awarded Champion Rosé, while the 2016 Waipara Hills Waipara Valley Riesling achieved Champion Riesling and crowned Wine Of The Show!
 
Waipara Valley is synonymous for producing fantastic textural aromatics, and this Riesling certainly exceeds this mark.
 
The aromas of juicy mandarin are enhanced by flavours of red apple and lime, delivering a crisp and lingering finish.
 
Waipara Hills winemaker Andrew Brown was wrapped with the result, adding that the perfectly balanced levels of sweetness and acidity makes this wine very approachable.
 
“This award recognises that the Waipara Valley is producing some of the finest aromatics in New Zealand. The style of winemaking we use at Waipara Hills is really all about harnessing varietal character and richness, that all starts in the vineyard.” he said.
 
Sourced from The Mound and Deans vineyards on the south side of the Waipara River, these Riesling vines are planted in deep free-draining gravels with a light loam top soil. The 2016 harvest was one that gifted warm and stable ripening weather, allowing these soils to do what they do best; create grapes bursting with vibrant flavour.
 
“From the vine to the cellar, it’s a great team effort here to produce award-winning wines year after year,” said Andrew.
 
General Manager for Accolade Wines NZ Jack Glover said to be awarded Wine Of The Show cemented the fact that a variety like Riesling can stand out against the pack.
 
“It’s a very versatile wine that can be enjoyed as an aperitif and with a wide variety of foods; my absolute favourite match with this Riesling is Vietnamese poached chicken salad with green papaya, garlic, chilli and crushed peanuts,” he said.
 
It was a fairytale beginning for the 2017 Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rosé; awarded Champion Rosé. During the 2017 harvest these Pinot Noir grapes were picked early, at an optimum time to capture the verve and concentration.
 
Aromas of light red berry fruit are complemented by a touch of sweetness on the palate, and the crisp finish of lingering raspberries and cream.
 
“It’s a great start to this wine’s career, Rosé is always a pleasure to make, and I’m sure it will be enjoyed immensely over the summer months,” said Andrew.
Wine Of The Show and Two Trophies at New Zealand Aromatic Competition
NZ Aromatic Competition
It was a trophy haul for Waipara Hills at the New Zealand Aromatic Wine Competition on 7th and 8th October.
 
The 2017 Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rosé was awarded Champion Rosé, while the 2016 Waipara Hills Waipara Valley Riesling achieved Champion Riesling and crowned Wine Of The Show!
 
Waipara Valley is synonymous for producing fantastic textural aromatics, and this Riesling certainly exceeds this mark.
 
The aromas of juicy mandarin are enhanced by flavours of red apple and lime, delivering a crisp and lingering finish.
 
Waipara Hills winemaker Andrew Brown was wrapped with the result, adding that the perfectly balanced levels of sweetness and acidity makes this wine very approachable.
 
“This award recognises that the Waipara Valley is producing some of the finest aromatics in New Zealand. The style of winemaking we use at Waipara Hills is really all about harnessing varietal character and richness, that all starts in the vineyard.” he said.
 
Sourced from The Mound and Deans vineyards on the south side of the Waipara River, these Riesling vines are planted in deep free-draining gravels with a light loam top soil. The 2016 harvest was one that gifted warm and stable ripening weather, allowing these soils to do what they do best; create grapes bursting with vibrant flavour.
 
“From the vine to the cellar, it’s a great team effort here to produce award-winning wines year after year,” said Andrew.
 
General Manager for Accolade Wines NZ Jack Glover said to be awarded Wine Of The Show cemented the fact that a variety like Riesling can stand out against the pack.
 
“It’s a very versatile wine that can be enjoyed as an aperitif and with a wide variety of foods; my absolute favourite match with this Riesling is Vietnamese poached chicken salad with green papaya, garlic, chilli and crushed peanuts,” he said.
 
It was a fairytale beginning for the 2017 Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rosé; awarded Champion Rosé. During the 2017 harvest these Pinot Noir grapes were picked early, at an optimum time to capture the verve and concentration.
 
Aromas of light red berry fruit are complemented by a touch of sweetness on the palate, and the crisp finish of lingering raspberries and cream.
 
“It’s a great start to this wine’s career, Rosé is always a pleasure to make, and I’m sure it will be enjoyed immensely over the summer months,” said Andrew.
Champion Riesling for 2015 Soul Deans at Bragato
The quality of aromatic wines being produced in the Waipara Valley has been reinforced once again, with the 2015 Waipara Hills Soul Deans Riesling taking home the Wohnsiedler Trophy for Champion Riesling at the recent Bragato Wine Awards.
 
The Soul Deans Riesling comes from grapes grown at our Deans Vineyard, this special block overlooks the sunny terraces of the Waipara River, with stunning views of Waipara Valley’s landmark hills the three Deans range.
 
Waipara Hills Vineyard Manager Jean-Luc Dufour said the vines and fruit of this vineyard are always a pleasure to work with.
 
“The soil and climate is perfect, and it’s this combination which allows us to craft this very special Riesling. The views here are breathtaking, there’s nothing I love more than being amongst the vines, watching the fruit evolve each year,” he said.  
 
With a hint of apple, lime and fresh herbs on the nose, this wine is fresh and alive. The vibrant lime flavours are balanced with a subtle sweetness and a long dry finish.
 
“We are thrilled to receive this Trophy, a strong acknowledgement of the great team work at Waipara Hills,” said Jean-Luc.
 
The New Zealand Winegrowers Romeo Bragato National Conference is one of the most important events on the New Zealand wine calendar.
 
The two-day conference is named after Romeo Bragato, whose pioneering work in the 19th Century formed the basis of modern New Zealand viticulture practices.
 
This event attracts an audience that traverses all aspects of the industry and provides an opportunity to keep up to speed with the latest research results, market trends and hot topics facing the industry.
 
There were 14 Trophies awarded at the Conference this year, acknowledging the top wines, vineyards and growers across a range of variety and styles.
Winner Announced for Waipara Hills Whirlpool Competition
Waipara Hills Whirlpool Competition
Thank you to everyone who entered our Whirlpool competition* that ran in participating stores from 1st March to 31st May 2017. Congratulation to B Graves of Nelson/Tasman, winner of $10,000 worth of Whirlpool kitchen appliances.

*Competition now closed.
Harvest 2017 Well Under Way at Waipara Hills
Waipara Hills 2017 Harvest

Waipara Hills Vineyard Manager Jean-Luc Dufour and his team were thrilled to begin harvest in late March, taking the fruit that’s been so carefully prepared, off the vines.

“The fruit is showing plenty of concentration and lovely spice,” said Jean-Luc.

Pinot Noir from our Home Block vineyard for the Waipara Hills Pinot Noir Rose was the first fruit to be harvested and brought into the winery, followed closely by Pinot Gris picked off the Deans vineyard and Riesling from The Mound.
 
Jean-Luc said the weather in Waipara has not been favourable all of the time, but the North Canterbury sun has certainly made enough of a presence to ripen the fruit when it has been needed most.
 
Waipara Hills Winemaker Andrew Brown said some Pinot Noir has now been ‘barrelled down,’ and various aromatic ferments are ticking away.
 
The team in the winery is working hard to ensure the fruit coming in is carefully put through ferment in a manner that ensures all the textural qualities of our Waipara Hills wines can be expressed.


 
Flavour profiles are seeing a lot of variation this year, especially due to when the grapes were picked and what flavours were prominent at that time.
 
Andrew said the earlier picked fruit showed through as apple flavours, while the more recently picked grapes boast nashi pear and stone fruit.
 
“There have been various picks carried out over the past three weeks in between rain events, and the fruit has held up amazingly well. It’s a real credit to the vineyard team,” he said.
 
“With settled weather now in the forecast, things are looking promising for the remainder of Harvest 2017,” he said.

2016 Waipara Hills Pinot Gris Scoops Second Trophy
Waipara Hills 2016 Pinot Gris

Waipara Hills has once again proved itself a leading aromatics producer, taking home the Pinot Gris Trophy at the Royal Easter Show Wine Awards Dinner on Saturday 4th March.
 
The rich and spicy characters of the 2016 Waipara Hills Pinot Gris have won the hearts of many, and the Trophy was yet another accolade to add to the list of awards this wine has won over the last few months.
 
General Manager for Accolade Wines NZ Jack Glover, has been absolutely thrilled with the performance of this wine.
 
He said the rich and complex flavours in the bottle transcend across so many groups of wine enthusiasts, who can all find something a little bit different to enjoy in their glass.
 
“This Pinot Gris has been particularly successful, with an acclaimed International Wine Show Trophy, and now a Royal Easter Show Trophy under its belt, as well as three Gold medals and a recommendation by Cuisine Magazine since it was bottled last spring.”

The Waipara Valley is snuggled in the lee of the Teviotdale hills, which provide protection from the cool ocean winds but open to warm Nor' Wester winds. The unique terroir of the valley floor, and being north facing with its moderately sloping river terraces, provides an ideal suntrap for grape ripening.

The winemaking team at Waipara Hills said what really made 2016 stand out was a vintage-defining Indian summer, where great flavour development was achieved leading into picking.
 
Grapes for the Waipara Hills Pinot Gris come from two of our vineyards, Home Block and Deans, where the combination of vine age, gravelly soils and minerality of these blocks create lively and aromatic wines, bursting with vibrancy and flavour. 

The perfect end to the Waipara Hills' concert season
Waipara Hills concert

It was an evening of ideal summer weather for those who took the trip out to Waipara Hills for The Winery Tour in February, the final summer concert for the series this season.

 
Much adored kiwi musicians Benny Tipene, Bic Runga and Brooke Fraser each had their time on stage where they all thoroughly enjoyed warming the hearts of the crowd who stood below them.
 
Despite the morning rain in North Canterbury and beyond, the sun was out by mid-afternoon and concert goers were turning up in short sleeves and jandals.
 
Benny Tipene was the first act up at 6pm, the Waipara Valley rolling hills lit up behind him by the evening sun.
 
His tracks Make You Mine, This Is Where Love Comes From, and Walking On Water had the crowd singing along.
 
Bic Runga was next out on stage, playing some numbers off her latest recently-released album , as well as classics, like Sway, Get Some Sleep, and Precious Things.
As the sun went down Brooke Fraser took centre stage, playing lots of known chart toppers Therapy, Kings and Queens, and Albertine. 
 
To finish the splendid evening off, Bic Runga and Brooke Fraser lit the stage together for some duet magic, including the Crowded House anthem ‘You’d Better Be Home Soon.’
 
Waipara Hills was also enveloped in summer sun for the Christmas in the Vines concert on December 17, featuring the adored trio of tenor brothers Pene and Amitai Pati, and baritone cousin Moses, with supporting acts and fellow kiwi music icons Hayley Westenra and Rebecca Nelson.
 
General Manager for Accolade Wines NZ Jack Glover said it was great to see music lovers this summer from all across the region and beyond, flocking through the gates of Waipara Hills to enjoy great music, beautiful wine and lovely views with their family and friends. “Nestled in the haven of the Waipara Valley, enjoying these simple and elegant pleasures is an integral part of the summer experience for many,” he said.

A stunning summer’s evening for an operatic Christmas in the Vines
Christmas in the Vines
It  was a superb summer’s evening of sunshine and festive cheer, for the Christmas in the Vines concert with Sol3 Mio at Waipara Hills.
 
The adored trio of tenor brothers Pene and Amitai Pati, and baritone cousin Moses, graced the stage last weekend with their operatic voices, a slice of humour, rock, pop, and plenty of Christmas music.
 
Rebecca Nelson set the evening off with some classical music to warm the crowd as the sun set on the Waipara Valley.
 
She was followed by a selection of Christmas favourites by Sol3 Mio including Jingle Bell Rock, Silent Night and Winter Wonderland, alongside the equally delightful but less known festive numbers like the Hawaiian Christmas song Mele Kalikimaka.
 
Complementing the talent of Sol3 Mio, classical singing sweetheart Hayley Westenra and Australian Idol winner Stan Walker supported throughout the concert, and the Christchurch Symphony Orchestra created a wonderful polish.
 
It was a particularly special evening for departing Waipara Hills Cellar Door and Café Manager Jenny Anderson, as she managed her final concert in her tenure at Waipara Hills. 
 
There’s no better way for Cantabrians to get into the festive spirit than Christmas in the Vines in the picturesque Waipara Valley. Merry Christmas everyone!

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