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Father's Day gifting guide

Looking for some inspiration for this upcoming Father's Day? We have a few ideas for you.

Airavata Syrah Vertical $330
Power and finesse
Three beautifully aged Airavata from some of the finest vintages in Hawke's Bay. This vertical includes the 2013, 2014, 2015 vintages and a complimentary premium Teflon coated corkscrew. These wines still have many years to go so don't rush to open!

Salomé Chardonnay Vertical $220
Sophisticated and fragrant
This vertical includes the 2016, 2017 and 2018 vintages. Salomé is a classic cellaring style, with great fruit purity and impressive complexity. 

Reds for Dad $110
Hawke's Bay Classic
 Full-bodied red blends might be the ultimate choice! This set includes the 2015 Merlot Malbec, 2016 Reserve Cabernet Franc & 2016 Le Phant Rouge

July 2020 Journal

June 2020 Journal

Click here to read the full version

"Elegance, refinement, purity: these are the watchwords at Elephant Hill"- Corney & Barrow

"Their philosophy respects the time-honoured approaches of the Old World, while harnessing modern techniques to refine them for the Hawke’s Bay.  There is no mistaking the appreciation for France’s classic fine wine regions and Elephant Hill honours them. This is particularly evident in the estate Chardonnay and Syrah, for which Elephant Hill is achieving increasing critical acclaim." 

"Classicists of the New World, Elephant Hill shines a light on the Hawke’s Bay, a fine wine region in its ascendancy."

Article by Rebecca Palmer – Associate Director & Buyer at Corney & Barrow
Click here to read the full article

Tom Cannavan reviewed Elephant Hill Wines

2015 Reserve Chardonnay
93 points
Salinity, flint and creamy minerality to spare in this lovely Chardonnay, smokiness and a little mint humbug buttery quality. The palate is beautiful, ripe pear and apple, a big thrust of lime and tangerine acidity into a long, balanced finish. 

2016 Salomé

93 points
Majority of the Chardonnay grapes came from the Te Awanga vineyard, with 17% from Bridge Pa Triangle. Matured in French oak, 34% new. A little more toastiness and buttery/oatmeally quality than the Reserve, a little Jack Daniel note, there is a fat lemony fruit and acid quality, and the phenolic grip and acid gives it fine presence and length, finishing with spice and nuttiness.

2018 Sea Sauvignon Blanc
90 pointsInspired by the coastal vineyards of Te Awanga, 50% was fermented in 500-litre oak puncheons and 50% in stainless steel. Peaches and stone fruits, passion fruit and star fruit, talcumy notes and then a big blast of orange and pink grapefruit on the palate with mouth-filling, ripe acidity. 

2016 Stone Syrah
92 points
Stone, represents the Gimblett Gravels, the source of the fruit for this Syrah, which has a lovely bold and plush appeal, ripe blackcurrant fruit with great juiciness, a hint of floral and peppery lift. Fruit is rich, tannins are silky, and the acidity balanced. 

2013 Airavata
94 points
From a great vintage, this is 99% Syrah with 1% Viognier, the fruit coming from Gimblett Gravels and the coastal Te Awanga vineyards. Creamy ripe black fruit on the nose, though plenty of pepper and spice, a crack of black pepper. The silkiness of the tannins and plush fruit gives a smooth, dense mouthfeel and great presence. 

2017 Airavata
93 points
In 2017 this is all Gimblett Gravels fruit, though still with 1% Viognier in the blend. This was bottled, but pre-release tasting of this vintage. Lifted violet and florals, more than the 2013 in this very young wine, such an intense kirsch-like fruit. On the palate it still has that cherry and red plum succulence, but there is cocoa and smokiness and good balancing acid. 

Your online experience is about to get even better!

Some of you might have heard it through the grapevines....
Yes, we have transformed the Elephant Hill website and you're in it now!

While we have kept the overall website design fairly similar, we have added some new functionalities which will make your shopping experience easier! We have also added features especially for our Wine Club members which offer more flexibility to tailor each shipment!

Tempted to join? 

Elephant Hill adapts to new trading environment, refocuses on wine

Dear friends of Elephant Hill,                                                            
We hope this email finds you safe and well, regardless of where you are during these extraordinary times. 

As you can imagine, COVID-19's impact on New Zealand's tourism and hospitality businesses is hitting hard. Here at Elephant Hill Winery in Te Awanga, Hawke's Bay, so much of our business is dependent on international visitors and wine sales to restaurants and bars across New Zealand and around the world. 

That is why we are reorganising our business with plans to strengthen and grow our wine business and our winery, creating a more immersive wine experience for visitors (when you return) and exploring ways we can connect with you, our loyal friends and fans, in new ways.

Our restaurant is currently closed under COVID-19 Level 4 restrictions and safe and responsible trading is likely to be some time away. Reluctantly, we made the decision it will not re-open. Regrettably, this means job losses in our restaurant team. 

Much thought has gone into our decision, and we are very sad to be losing great people who have contributed so much to Elephant Hill and the unique experience we offer our visitors. Please know that we are doing everything we can to support them at this difficult time. 

Looking toward to the future, we are committed to evolving the unique Elephant Hill wine experience and showcasing the philosophy of excellence and innovation that is at the heart of everything we do. We very much look forward to welcoming visitors, local and international, back to the Winery in the not-too-distant future.

In the meantime, you will be pleased to know you can still order your favourite Elephant Hill wines and have them delivered right to your door. We look forward to being of service to you!

Stay safe,

The Weiss Family
Elephant Hill Winery
24th April 2020

The secret is out!

We are thrilled to share this news with you! 

The 2015 Airavata Syrah and 2016 Reserve Cabernet Franc Cabernet Merlot have been awarded a Double Gold Medal and our 2017 Salomé Chardonnay also picked up a Gold Medal from 2019 Six Nations Wine Challenge

The Six Nations Wine Challenge is one of the most prestigious annual wine shows in the world. The challenge engages one of the leading wine critics in each of the six nations: Australia, New Zealand, USA, Canada, Chile and South Africa, inviting the top 100 wines the country offers for judging. The 6 critics then form the panel of judges that assess the 600 wines in Sydney, across 16 classes, to find some of the greatest wines of the new world producing nations. Bob Campbell MW is New Zealand’s representative Judge.

Elephant Hill picked up two spots at Gimblett Gravels Annual Selection 2017

Gimblett Gravels Winegrowers District is home to some of New Zealand's finest full-bodied red wines. And for the challenging 2017 vintage, both our Airavata and Stone Syrah were selected by Sydney based Master of Wine, Andrew Caillard MW to represent the growing district. 

Although the two selected Syrahs are not available for purchase yet, current vintages are available online 2015 Airavata , 2016 Stone Syrah

Since the 2008 vintage, a range of twelve Gimblett Gravels red wines have been independently selected to represent the winegrowing district and it is our pleasure to be listed with other great Gimblett Gravels producers.
Click here to find out more about Gimblett Gravels Annual Selection

Michael Cooper reviewed Elephant Hill's latest Icon release

2015 Airavata Syrah

An emerging star. The very classy, stylish 2015 vintage (5*) was estate-grown and hand-harvested in the Gimblett Gravels (71 per cent) and at Te Awanga (29 per cent), co-fermented with a splash of Viognier (1.7 per cent of the blend), and matured for 26 months in French oak casks (40 per cent new). It has deep, bright, youthful colour, with a beautifully fragrant, fresh, spicy bouquet. A full-bodied, graceful, supple red, it has concentrated, plummy, slightly peppery and nutty flavours, savoury notes adding complexity, and a very harmonious, finely textured, persistent finish. Already delicious, but still unfolding, it should break into full stride from 2022 onwards.

2015 Hieronymus

The powerful, sturdy, rich 2015 vintage (5*) is a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon (41 per cent), Merlot (22 per cent), Cabernet Franc (17 per cent), Malbec (12 per cent) and Tempranillo (8 per cent), estate-grown in the Gimblett Gravels (58 per cent) and the Bridge Pa Triangle (42 per cent). Matured for 26 months in French oak casks (50 per cent new), it is a boldly coloured, fruit-packed red, with a fragrant, spicy bouquet. Still youthful, it is full-bodied, with dense, well-ripened blackcurrant, plum, spice and nut flavours, hints of pepper and licorice, good tannin backbone, and a long, very harmonious finish. Best drinking 2022+.


2017 Salomé

The very youthful, tightly structured 2017 vintage (5*) was estate-grown at Te Awanga (principally) and in the Bridge Pa Triangle, and fermented and matured for a year in French oak casks (33 per cent new). Bright, light lemon/green, it has an inviting, complex, fragrant bouquet. Intensely flavoured, it is vibrant, peachy and citrusy, with well-integrated, biscuity oak, good acid spine and a persistent, harmonious finish. Full-bodied, crisp and highly concentrated, with obvious potential, it's well worth cellaring to 2022+.

Sam Kim reviewed Elephant Hill's latest Icon release

2015 Airavata
A compelling rendition; the impressively complex bouquet shows blackberry, Black Doris plum, dark spice, cedar and cocoa characters with nuances of floral and game. The palate is superbly concentrated and weighted, delivering waves of delicious flavours and rich texture, brilliantly structured by seamlessly woven tannins. Sumptuous and graceful, destined for a long life. At its best: 2020 to 2032.

2015 Hieronymus

This is profound and compelling; the superbly expressed bouquet shows crème de cassis, Black Doris plum, vanilla, spicy oak and cocoa characters with hints of dried herb and mixed spice. The palate delivers outstanding concentration and depth, wonderfully complemented by layers of rich texture and polished tannins, finishing impressively long and engaging. A blend of 41% cabernet sauvignon, 22% Merlot, 17% Cabernet Franc, 12% Malbec and 8% Tempranillo. At its best: 2024 to 2035

2017 Salomé

Seductive and sensuous, this splendidly composed chardonnay shows golden peach, rockmelon, lemon peel and brioche characters with nuances of vanilla and cedar. The palate is superbly weighted and expansive, delivering delectable fruit flavours together with stylish oak infusion, finishing persistent and creamy. It is opulent yet elegant with layers of fine texture. At its best: now to 2025

Elephant Hill's latest reviews from Bob Campbell MW and Cameron Douglas MS

2017 Salomé Chardonnay
"Immediately complex with a Meursault-like bouquet of cashew spice, cold smoke, grapefruit peel, apple and peach. A complex and lengthy wine on the palate with flavours that mirror the nose. Satin texture with a light creamy butter note and a bit of new oak. Primed for cellaring with drinking from 2021/22 and through to 2030. An excellent wine." 97 points - Cameron Douglas MS
"Only the second vintage of Elephant Hill's flagship chardonnay with just 111 cases produced. Most of the grapes from Te Awanga with some from a low-cropped section of their Bridge Pa vineyard. Concentrated yet restrained chardonnay that is rather taut at this early stage with chalky, mineral, citrus, brioche and bran biscuit flavours. Should develop well with bottle age. Drink now - 2025." 95 points - Bob Campbell MW

2016 Stone Syrah
"Focus, concentration and power, pepper-spice, wood spice, violets and dark berries, barrel spice and bacon oak, masculine and muscle. There's no mistaking the power and presence of this wine on the palate with youthful energy, backbone of acidity, powerful tannins and core of fruit carrying the structure well, but also showing youth and potential. Lengthy finish with concentration and power. A wine to rival Northern Rhone counterparts. Best drinking 2021 through 2030." 96 points -Cameron Douglas MS
"75 cases made. Dense, restrained and elegant syrah with floral, smoky, black pepper flavours restrained by fine, close-knit tannins that clearly suggest bottle age potential. This is Elephant Hill's top syrah from this coolish vintage. Drink now to 2023" 96 points- Bob Campbell MW


2015 Airavata
"A complex and engaging wine from bouquet to palate the more your swirl, sip and explore the more it offers. Pressed violets and dark raspberry, black currant and plum. Bold tannins and youthful acidity, a hint of tar and boot polish, meat and smoke. No mistaking the impact of oak with a core of fruit and flavour this wine is impressive. Requires cellar time to integrate and develop. Decant and taste again in 2022. A wine destined to last through to 2030+."  98 points- Cameron Douglas MS
"Flagship syrah made from 2/3 Gimblett Gravels and 1/3 Te Awanga grapes. Big, dense and very ripe red that is both elegant and a blockbuster with pepper, plum, berry, coffee and mocha flavours. A concentrated wine that's built to last. Drink now - 2025" 96 points- Bob Campbell MW

2015 Hieronymus
"Youthful, powerful and focused bouquet of Hawkes Bay red wine. The Cabernet is the driving force on the nose with cigar and blackberry fruit, the Franc is unmistakable with olive and sweet leaves, violet and dark berry; the Malbec highlights new oak with bitter chocolate and black cherry note; the Merlot brings everything together with flavours of plum and softness. Other flavours include marmite and barrel spices. A youthful example with big tannins and acidity to match and plenty new oak, complex and lengthy finish. Cellar till at least 2025 before sampling again. This will be a twenty-five year wine. Cellar properly and this wine will reward." 98 points- Cameron Douglas MS
"280 cases made. A blend of cabernet sauvignon, merlot, cabernet franc, malbec and tempranillo. Big, dense red with concentration and power. Layers of berry, dried fruits, spice, cedar and a suggestion of floral characters. A very complex wine with a higher level of dry extract (a measure of flavour concentration) than any wine previously made at Elephant Hill. Drink now – 2030" 97 points- Bob Campbell MW