Hawke’s Bay is my home region so I obviously have a natural bias for this amazing region for food and wine. Historically known as the food basket of New Zealand it is also New Zealand’s oldest wine region with wineries dating back to the 1950s. It is also the second-largest wine region in the country encompassing approximately 5,000 hectares of vines. Situated on the eastern side of the north island and sheltered from westerly climatic influences the region is warm and generally dry. Combined with free-draining riverbed soils the Chardonnay, Syrah, Merlot and Cabernet family varieties excel. More well-known sub-regions include The Gimblett Gravels, Bridge Pa Trianta, Te Awanga and Esk Valley.