Our aim is to grow grapes of the highest quality which fully express the features of the vineyard, and to handle these with the utmost respect. Natural methods and as little intervention as possible at all stages from vine to bottle typify our approach. We believe in sustainable viticultural management, organic techniques, low crop levels, minimal handling of fruit during processing, gentle pressing and slow fermentation. We allow wines to go through natural malolactic fermentation and clarify by settling. Our red wines are bottled without filtration. We aspire to capture the unique flavours of the vineyard in our wine.
The Donaldson family have been seriously involved in wine since the early 1970's and were pioneers of local grape growing and wine making. Associate Professor and Consultant Neurologist, Ivan Donaldson, is a wine writer and wine judge. He also oversees viticulture and wine styles. His wife, Christine, is business manager and as a passionate opera lover, organises annual operatic concerts in Pegasus Bay's natural amphitheatre. Their eldest son, Matthew, did an oenology degree and a postgraduate diploma in viticulture at Roseworthy College in Australia. He and his partner Lynnette Hudson, who graduated with distinction from Lincoln University with a postgraduate diploma in oenology and viticulture, are the winemakers. Matthew supervises the reds and Lynnette oversees the whites. Another son, Edward Donaldson, is marketing manager and, as a trained chef, supervises the Pegasus Bay Vineyard restaurant. Pegasus Bay is an entirely family-owned and operated enterprise.
Learn More About Sauvignon Blanc
Sauvignon Blanc (so-veen-YAWN blahnk)
One of the most distinctive grapes, Sauvignon Blanc is a highly aromatic variety
that does well in both the old and new world. From the Loire
Valley of France to Marlborough
in New Zealand, Sauvignon Blanc has found many regions that bring out its unique
and delicious flavors.
Sauvignon Blanc's home is the Loire Valley of France, where it produces the
crisp, grassy mineral-tinged wines of Sancerre and Pouilly Fume (not to be mistaken
with Pouilly Fuisse in Burgundy
- that would be Chardonnay). Wine of this region is crisp and grassy, with delicious minerality and an
occasional gun flint/smokey character. In the 1970's, New Zealand planted its first cuttings
of Sauvignon Blanc, which in turn brought the country to the forefront of the
wine world. In New Zealand, the variety exudes its typical crisp acidity, as
well as pungent passion fruit and grapefruit aromas and flavors. In
Sauvignon Blanc is produced both in stainless steel (like New Zealand and France)
and with a touch of oak. The wooded versions maintain the acidity of the grape
but tone down the intense citrus flavors with subtle oak characteristics. Winemakers
differ in their addition or choice of oak. The grape also produces delicious
wines from Chile and
Summing it up
Successful Sites: Loire Valley, New Zealand, California, Chile, Italy
Common Descriptors: grass, lemon, grapefruit, passion fruit.
Learn More About New Zealand
A few other New Zealand areas include the region of Auckland, high up on the North Island, Nelson, sitting to the west of Marlborough, and Canterbury, just under Waipara on the South Island. Most wines in New Zealand will come from a designated area and say so on the label.
Auckland was one of the first wine growing regions of the country, but now produces very little of New Zealand's wine. It's pretty wet up there so vineyards are planted in the driest spots possible – reds are most popular here. Nelson is the only region along the west coast of the country, producing Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Canterbury's chilly climate is best suited for Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.