Waiheke Island has many wineries in fact I was told on my visit to Waiheke a few weeks ago the island has over 30 wineries, it really does hold its name of “The island of Wine” very well!
I had the most beautiful day (even if it was a little chilly!) on Waiheke a few weeks back. Explore Waiheke took us over on their large and modern ferry’s and Waiheke Executive Travel transported us around whilst giving us useful but fun facts of island life!
We visited two vineyards on our visit and Cable Bay Vineyard was our first stop, I suggest you make this your first stop too! It is extremely close to the ferry terminal (around a 5 minute drive) so it is almost criminal if you don’t pop in for a visit! The winery is located on high on a hill where you can overlook the view of the green rolling hills, the sea and of course Auckland city. The place has a really lovely wine cellar underneath the restaurant. They also have an underground private dining room which is really fancy with a glass wall where you can see through to the cellar! It demands exclusivity and uniqueness.
We were able to stop and have a tour of their facilities (brilliant location for a wedding FYI!) as well as try a few of their wines!
After a brief pit stop to Oneroa, the main town of Waiheke we were on our way to Batch Winery. This winery is located at one of the highest points of the island which we were told is great for the grapes especially in the long humid summers NZ often has. It has the most amazing 360 degree views of the island it feels like you’re in the middle of the island as all you can see is the rolling hills of Waiheke. From here you get a real sense of how large this island actually is! We had the absolute pleasure of meeting the owners whose professionalism and enthusiasm about wine impressed me, as well as their humour! They talked about wine as if they were talking about a piece of art, and they dug deep into the philosophy of wine making and the relationship of wine making and nature, etc.
One highlight of the tour I did enjoy was definitely the “High Tea” lunch that Batch Winery offer at their restaurant called Thomas’s Bach. There restaurant was designed with the concept of the kiwi “Bach” in mind and I was actually impressed the restaurant actually looked like a Bach! Scaffolding and all! The lunch was delicately made and was welled match with a glass of Champagne! This visit to this winery definitely replicated the slow-paced culture that New Zealand offers – I felt like I never wanted to leave!
Unfortunately we only had time to visit two wineries on this visit but we definitely intend on returning and exploring more, let me know which vineyard I should visit next!