Joelle Thomson

Wine writer and award winning wine author

What I am drinking, reading and savouring each week


New pop up cellar door in Martinborough

The new owners of Nga Waka Wines are opening their new pop up cellar door wine facility on election day this year, Saturday 17 October.

Nga Waka Wines has made small volumes of high quality wine since 1993. Founding winemaker Roger Parkinson  continues to steer the winemaking under the new(ish) ownership of Jay Short and Peggy Dupey, who have significant expansion plans in place to increase both their vineyard area, wine production and also at a new winery cellar door, scheduled to open in October 2021. Plans for the new cellar facility and landscape designs are almost complete and will go to the South Wairarapa District Council for consent this month, says general manager Mick Hodson.

“Saturday 17 October is election day – but we can’t let politics get in the way of wine tasting a pop up cellar door for summer. This pop up will use the existing buildings with a couple of barrels and a tray of glasses. It  will be a good way to test systems, talk to customers and sell wine,” says Hodson, who has worked in marketing the company’s wines for many years and joined as GM this year.

It is 20 years since Nga Waka was last open for cellar door tasting and sales, he says. “It will be a great opportunity for people hear our story directly and taste and buy our wines. I am very excited about this and looking forward to getting back in front of customers – doing what I love – talking about wine.”

  • Covid 19 will have little impact for Nga Waka’s 2021 vintage with winery staff and contractors from Wall Horticulture able to supply the staff needed for hand picking grapes, says Hodson.