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Elephant Hill named Winery of the Year runner-up

December 7 2018 

New Zealand Wine writer Raymond Chan published his Raymond Chan Wine Reviews website on 'Winery of the Year 2018'.  Elephant Hill is humbled to be runner-up for 'Winery of the Year 2018'. 

According to Raymond Chan, "The ‘Winery of the Year’ award is my way of recognising the best performing wine producer who has submitted wines to Raymond Chan Wine Reviews for independent assessment in ‘Feature Reviews’ over the year. The criteria for the award are based on the qualities and significance of the wines in terms of excellence as seen in my descriptions and ratings, as well as how the wines have appealed to me on a subjective and hedonistic level as a wine enthusiast and consumer. In addition, the award can take into account innovation and style, and the progress the producer has made in making fine New Zealand wine, as well as the setting of standards for this country’s industry". 

"Elephant Hill’s icon 2014 Hieronymous Blended Red scored a perfect 20.0/20, and this was followed very closely by the 2014 Airavata Syrah and 2016 Salomé Chardonnay. The new ‘Earth’, ‘Stones’ and ‘Sea’ range sitting above the already outstanding ‘Reserve’ wines just adds further depth to Elephant Hill’s portfolio." said Raymond Chan.

Raymond Chan also selected 25 wines to be the TOP WINES OF 2018 and Elephant Hill's 2016 Salomé Chardonnay (scored 19.5+/20) and 2014 Hieronymus (scored 20/20) were both featured on the list.  

To read the full 'Winery of the Year 2018' article, click here
To see our full accolades list, click here


For further information, please contact:
Kalos Chan, Marketing and Communication Executive, Elephant Hill
Tel: +64 6 872 6066


Dec, 2018

We turnt 10!

Can you believe Elephant Hill is turning 10 this month?! We would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our customers, whether you purchased wine from us, dine with us for a special occasion or been in for a tasting. In this very special time of the year, we want to share 10 fun facts of Elephant Hill which we get asked quite often. Let's see if you know all of them!

1. Where does the name 'Elephant Hill' come from? Our founder Roger Weiss was inspired by the elephants while travelling with Reydan in Myanmar and he decided to name the winery and restaurant Elephant Hill.

2. Do you have a sweet wine? Yes, we do! It's called Rania. Roger and Reydan named the sweet wine after their daughter's name: Rania - because a sweet wine deserves a sweet girl's name! We released the first vintage of this sweet wine for Rania's 25th birthday in 2009.

3. Why is the winery building in teal colour? It resembles the colour of the sky and the Pacific Ocean on a sunny afternoon.

4. How old is Maggie the winery dog? 3

5. How many permeant staff? We started off with only 6 staff in 2008 but we currently have approximately 40 staff.

6. How many staff have been here since 2008? 6

7. What does Airavata mean? The name stems from the mythological white elephant who carries the Hindu god Indra, also called "elephant of the clouds" or "the fighting elephant"

8. Has anyone ever jumped in the green pool next to the restaurant? Yes, a few years ago. Sorry, it's NOT a swimming pool!

9. Which wine is the top-seller? Syrah!

10. How much does Elephant Hill produce? Around 20,000- 22,000 cases per year.

Nov, 2018

Best Winery Restaurant 2018


It was released on Monday night 15th October that our restaurant has been awarded 'Best Winery Restaurant' and 2 hats at this year's Cuisine Good Food Guide Awards. We are truly humbled to have received both awards. Many of you "liked" and "shared" our great news on Facebook and Instagram, thank you so much for your ongoing support.

The annual Cuisine Good Food Guide Awards brings together New Zealand’s best chefs, restaurateurs and hospitality powerhouses for one night each year to celebrate excellence within New Zealand’s hospitality industry.

It has been an amazing decade being part of the New Zealand wine, hospitality and tourism scene and we take great pride and care to deliver world-class dining experience. Our head chef Ashley Jones, restaurant manager Suraj G.C and the team of Elephant Hill look forward to greeting you at Elephant Hill in the near future!

To read Cuisine's full review, please click here.
*We advise all customers to book online to avoid disappointment. 


Oct, 2018

2018 Vintage-report and preview

The 2017-18 season will be remembered as one which was consistently warmer day to day than previous years. It was not that temperatures were necessarily higher, it was more a sense of milder conditions overall, rather than suffering extremes. The result, was much earlier vine growth and seasonal development than has been seen in recent memory. The consistently warm conditions from the start of the season resulted in one of the earliest known starts to vintage at EH. Picking of our new (young) chardonnay clones at our inland Triangle vineyard started on the 26th February, over two weeks earlier than normal. 12 days into picking, however, the Chardonnay picking was marred by the onset of 45mm of rain and a stint of two and half weeks of wet conditions.

Thankfully, plenty of hard work much earlier in the season well and truly paid off, with blocks of fruit coming off clean after surviving prolonged periods of wet weather. A dry spell of about a week allowed early reds (Merlot plus some Syrah) to be picked at our Gimblett and Triangle vineyards at premium ripeness. This was also an important final stage of ripening for our later Icon Syrah and Cabernet blocks. These blocks require longer, slower ripening phase and a cooling down of temperatures in early to mid-April suited these perfectly. The result, even with the return of wet weather was some of the best blocks of Syrah and Cabernet Sauvignon ever picked in the history of EH.

We invited wine writer Raymond Chan to taste some new releases as well as red barrel samples, see Raymond's report here.
 Jon Peet, our viticulturist has also put together a full growing season report for 2018 vintage, to read more or download, click here.

Aug, 2018

The Most Grammable Restaurants in New Zealand

We are honoured to be one of the most aesthetically pleasing dining establishments in New Zealand, according to Remix Magazine. As much as we love our beautifully assembled dishes by our award-winning restaurant team, we are also blessed with a gorgeous view of the Cape Kidnappers! To follow our food and wine journey, feel free to follow us on social media- @elephanthill on Instagram or @ElephantHillWinery on Facebook





Jul, 2018

The Ultimate Hawke's Bay Wedding


Wedding amongst the vines? Exchange vows in our beautiful cellar and a reception in our award-winning restaurant? You list it and our team at Elephant Hill can make it happen! Either you have a small intimate wedding or a large wedding, we can ensure each wedding reflects the individuality of each couple. With 10 years of experience, our award-winning restaurant team delivers the highest quality New Zealand produce in a European tradition. 

As a premium wine producer, Elephant Hill can offer the perfect wine for your special occasion. Our staff will guide you through a tasting of our wine allowing you to select your wines to enhance your wedding meal. In addition, we have accommodation available onsite which can sleep up to 8 guests. Elephant Hill Lodge offers luxurious living experience with the most spectacular views of Cape Kidnappers. To find out more about the lodge, please click here.  

If you wish to enquire, please email Michelle - and we will send a wedding package to you.

In the upcoming blog, we will introduce some local talents we have collaborated for a number of memorable weddings.
Watch this space!


Jun, 2018

2015 Elephant Hill Reserve Chardonnay awarded Best in Show at Decanter World Wine Awards 2018

The largest and one of the most influential wine competitions in the world, Decanter World Wine Awards 2018 (DWWA), has awarded Elephant Hill 2015 Reserve Chardonnay Best in Show and 97 points. According to Decanter, the competition is judged by some of the top wine experts from around the world and is trusted internationally for its rigorous judging process.

Elephant Hill winemaker Steve Skinner commented: “Our ethos quite simply is to produce the best possible wines that express their vineyard, variety and vintage. Over our ten year history, we have carefully watched how our vineyards perform and mapped out the various blocks and varieties. Te Awanga is an excellent sub-region for growing Chardonnay. Clay soils and a reliable sea-breeze from the nearby Pacific Ocean further enhance the expression of our coastal vineyard. 2015 was a very strong vintage: a warm season, with below-average rainfall, which allowed us to take multiple hand-picks of Chardonnay from our 4 Te Awanga sub-blocks. The 2015 Reserve is predominantly blended from Clone 15, which is used for its citrus flavours and lively acidity. The remainder of the blend is Clone 95, which contributes tropical fruit flavours and richness. These two clones were picked over 7 dates in early-to-mid March.”

The Best in Show is the ultimate accolade at the Decanter World Wine Awards. In a separate tasting, the four Co-Chairs select the ‘Best in Show’ from the Platinum winners. 2015 Elephant Hill Reserve Chardonnay was one of three New Zealand wines awarded Best in Show.


For further information, please contact:
Kalos Chan, Marketing and Communication Executive, Elephant Hill
Tel: +64 6 872 6066

Jun, 2018