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Auckland, North Island, New Zealand
Wine tour operator, wine writer and lapsed physiotherapist. "Nature abhors a vacuum. I personally hate dusting."


Saturday, January 24, 2015

Waiheke Island's new wineries

Over the hols we managed to catch up with two brand spanking new winery operations on Waiheke Island.

Batch Winery
129 Carsons Road
09 372 3223
Open Summer 7 days 11.00 pm – 7.00 pm 
Winter Saturday & Sunday 12.30 am – 4.30 pm
The highest elevated vineyard on the island, Batch has spectacular views out over the gulf and islands. Local architect David Scott has designed a suitably stylish Kiwi shed-like winery building that also incorporates state of the art gravity flow technology and winemaking equipment. They have three labels: Fizz (sparkling Prosecco method 100% chardonnay, riesling and rosé); Batch Winery Estate, and the top tier Thomas & Sons reserve label.  All wines are grown, vinted and bottled onsite, including pinot gris, flora, cabernet franc, cabernet sauvignon and syrah.
Notable wines – flora $60, syrah $44, and the Prosecco style sparklers $34 - $42
Food Café
Lunch 11.30 am – 3.00 pm   High Tea 3.00 pm – 7.00 pm
Simple menu with fresh and tasty options accompanied by local olive oils and freshly baked artisan Italian style breads. High Tea consists of a tall platter of savoury and sweet goodies, accompanied by a glass of Fizz.
Vineyard Dog – Ranger
The viticulturist’s dog, his favourite pastimes are meeting and greeting visitors and running madly through the vineyard

Frenchman’s Hill Estate and Expatrius Wines
1 Margaret Reeve Lane
09 372 3387
Open Summer 11.00 am – 4.00 pm Thursday to Sunday
Winter 11.00 am – 3.00 pm Thursday to Sunday (phone ahead)
Couple, Luc and Anna Desbonnets bring a touch of Gallic flair to Waiheke with their new vineyard, café, cellar door/gift shop and boutique accommodation. Anna takes care of the retail and wine tasting, while Luc looks after the vines and makes wines under the Frenchmans Hill Estate and Expatrius labels. The property consists of 5 hectares of north facing, steeply sloping vineyard just below the tasting room, plus olive groves and wetlands. Frenchman’s Hill also has two other vineyard blocks on Waiheke. Olive oil and figs prodded on the property are also for sale. The gift shop features art works and funky homeware and décor items. Tastings can be had at a small bar, or in the spacious covered courtyard with views across to Anzac Bay.
Notable wines
The Rocks Rosé $35, Blood Creek (Meritage Bordeaux style) $98.
Food – Café
Simple bistro fare at reasonable prices
Accommodation - Guest House
The secluded guest house provides a luxury getaway accommodation with an apartment for 1 to 4 guests. Continental breakfast and complimentary wine tasting is included in tariff ($345 to $445 depending on numbers and season.)

Phil Parker runs the best wine tours in Auckland known to human kind