From the vineyards of Dalmatia, immigrant families brought winemaking skills across the world to the green foothills of Auckland’s Waitakere Ranges.

For four generations these dedicated pioneer viticulturists tended their vines as the city grew around them slowly engulfing their productive slopes within dense urban conurbations.

Henderson now has a vibrant community of around 20 winemakers spread throughout this sprawling area. For the visiting wine enthusiast the vineyards could not be more accessible as some are within walking distance of Henderson City Centre. Four are located on Lincoln Road just off the Northwestern Motorway and two are in the Henderson Valley. Others are in Bruce McLaren Road and a number of secondary roads in the area.

In common with other Auckland regions, the soils tend to be shallow clays over a base layer of silt and clay with some sandy loams. The old established wineries have excellent modern facilities, producing prestigious award-winning wines made from grapes grown locally and also imported from the predominant growing regions of the country. Leading varieties are Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc, and Semillon.

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The welcome mat is out for all visitors with tastings and sales of premium wines available from the cellar shop, and there are elegant restaurants and cafes to entice you to stay awhile. It is fascinating to hear the early history of the wine industry, created by Dalmatian settlers who originally moved here after working in the Northland gumfields. While you are travelling around take time to visit the orchards, market gardens and craft shops of the region. Don’t miss the panoramic views of the city from the summit of the Waitakere Ranges, on Scenic Drive.

The Henderson wine trail is a must – a cultural experience to soak up the atmosphere in some of the oldest family-owned vineyards in the country. Be sure to sample some of the ‘Winemaker’s Reserve’ wines with their delicious fruity flavours.

By | 2016-11-26T18:58:25+00:00 February 3rd, 2014|Wine Regions|0 Comments

About the Author:

Danny de Hek
Like most people, I have many passions, goals and dreams. As a self made business professional, my focus is helping my clients, associates and friends, build, strengthen and maintain their success. It would be fair to say I am in the full time business of building relationships and feel my purpose and skill is connecting the right people with the right people. My professional work tends to dominate my personal life, to the horror of my partner and business mentor. They both fully support me yet give me the hard truths when I need to hear this. I am always investing in my personal development to have a fulfilled work/life balance. I enjoy Target Shooting, Hiking & Mountain Biking to clear the brain and to take the guilt away when indulging at a quirky cafe for a cooked breakfast or brunch. My passion for travelling has seen me experience the world on many occasions, my next adventure will be doing the Tibet Rail Journey on the Qinghai-Tibet Railway from Lhasa to Golmud as long as they have Wi-Fi aboard ;-) I have many goals I still wish to achieve but am pretty chuffed that I have accomplished so many of these already.

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