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Take me to Cambridge Road

Cambridge Road Winery

Martinborough holds many secret pleasures, this week we were privileged to find one such treasure, a "tucked away" private sanctuary, located down a meandering driveway close to Martinborough Village Square. Cambridge Road vineyard, owned by Lance Redgwell a young winemaker who is fast making a name for himself as an innovative creator of incredible wines.

The approach is holistic - the vineyard based on biodynamic principles - a natural approach to the craft of wine making.

We got the chance to chat to Lance this week - he's on a busy schedule having just returned from Peter Gordon's Auckland restaurant "Sugar Club", co-hosting a winemakers dinner featuring Cambridge Road wines with the cuisine of Sugar Club's head chef Neil Brazier. There's a lot happening on the Cambridge Road horizon & you need to be part of this experience, let us show you why.

Cambridge Road - where it began

Lance was in Tasmania in 2005 & started researching sites around New Zealand, he decided on Martinborough for several reasons, the old vines & history, the close village aspect of neighbouring vineyards & terrain, the European feel - a complete package. The Cambridge Road site was once a sale yard in this previous farming focused town, the vineyards are now a mainstay of the local economy.

"Some of these vines have been here since 1986" he tells us. Lance is passionate about farming the vineyard, today the old Syrah vines are coming out. "They've been under producing too long, I've let them have 5 years for love" he's clearly passionate about his craft, respects the old but embraces the new. He's bringing a fresh punch into the region with his natural approach. "Wines intention is to reflect terroir, soils, climate, the local character - to emulate the cultures of the region" he inspires us. We're mesmerised listening to this clever craftsman describe his passion.....then there's the wine tasting, an experience we have to share.

Cambridge Road wines

The philosophy is to craft natural wines with a minimalist approach - avoiding sulphites, using a natural process with minimal handling. "There are only a handful of winemakers doing this in the country" Lance tells us, "it can be incredible or it can go horribly wrong".

We start with The Naturalist, French farmhouse wine, cloudy bubbles - perfect with the cheeseboard. There's Weeping tiger - made & named after the local Thai restaurant dish - (regional cultures coming through into the wine). Papillon Blanc - sensational with the Gorgonzola, then moving onto the Pinot blends, rich, spicy, smooth, sensational - Animus, the darker/wild Pinot a standout - but difficult to choose a favourite.

"It's a fringe approach to winemaking- a trend, indigenous yeast building different textures & characters, it gives fresh thinking individuals the chance to bring a new approach. I came here to make Pinot & it's turned into so much more" Lance reflects with a smile.

Cambridge Road Wines are gaining international acclaim, being exported to Sydney, Tokyo, London, New York, Stockholm, Canada - taste them & it's easy to see why. Scroll down for more......

Italian style courtyard, alfresco wine tasting

Our winter Sunday afternoon spent at Cambridge Road was one of the best experiences we've had, our host Bridie McKenna gave us a relaxing talk through the tasting, we felt right at home.The delicious deli style platter to accompany this fabulous wine was incredible, cheese from Featherston's fabulous Ce'st Cheese matched the wine perfectly.

There's unique,simple pleasure at play here - relaxing in the Italian style courtyard, the winter sun shine filtering through the trees, toying with us, a promise of summers warmth to come. Sipping the beautifully crafted wines is so easy, their warmth & natural passion inspiring us, each taste brings us closer to the connection of land blended with culture & pleasurable craft.

Scenic views of the vineyard with the magnificent Tararuas as a backdrop - this could be Provence....somewhere in Europe or France. But it's right here in Martinborough Village, just over an hour from New Zealand's capital, our captivating village, the place we call home. We will be visiting this unique vineyard again, we highly recommend you visit the Cambridge Road cellar door for an experience like no other. If you're lucky you'll get to talk to the man behind the wines....passion spills from every corner of this place & you need to be a part of it.

"Take us to Cambridge Road"

For more info on Cambridge Road: Cambridge Road listing
(Click this link for full notes on Cambridge Road wines)
Cambridge Road wines

"A huge thanks to Lance Redgewell & Bridie McKenna for the opportunity to taste these incredible wines, your vineyard setting & cellar door are welcoming, we can't wait to return!"

The Naturalist - French farmhouse bubbles with deli platter

Rustic courtyard appeal with picturesque views

Trish Higginson & Karina Hailwood
Creative Directors
Martinborough Village
"Let us show you the magic of our town"

Copyright MV 2015
enquiries to karina@martinborough-village.co.nz