Wairarapa means glistening waters in Māori.
It is an area initially renowned for stunning Pinot Noir – in addition to Chardonnay, aromatic whites, Syrah and dessert wines.
Named after the founding runholder John Martin, the town of Martinborough was laid out in the form of a Union Jack!
Situated on the southern end of the North Island, the quaint village of Martinborough sits at 42° south, a similar distance to Burgundy from the equator.
With its cool climate and Burgundian soil profile, Martinborough was first planted in the late 1970s. Elegant Pinot Noir, crisp Chardonnay. vivid Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah and aromatics are all produced in this southern Wairarapa subregion.
With early morning frosts and hot summer days, the diurnal range of Masterton, the largest town in the Wairarapa, produces complex wines with intense flavour. Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc are the most planted varieties.
Free-draining river beds and a cooler climate with plenty of sunshine suit Pinot Noir very well, in addition to vivacious Sauvignon Blanc and a range of aromatic whites.