Restaurant review: Highfield TerraVin Vineyard Restaurant

The view, the hospitality and the food – TerraVin Vineyard Restaurant is one not to be missed, writes Toni Gillan.

Immediately over the bridge, turn left and then left again up the hill and there it is. The Highfield Tuscan-inspired winery and tower stands tall on Brookby Ridge with its famous commanding 360-degree views across the Wairau Valley.

Established back in the day around 1989, with various progressive owners, Highfield winery joined forces with TerraVin in July 2015. The company is now collaboratively called Highfield TerraVin with winemakers Alistair Soper (Highfield) and Gordon Ritchie (TerraVin) along with marketing/managing director, Pete Coldwell each holding a stake in the company. Each winemaker continues to makes their own label wines with both brands sold at Highfield’s cellar door tasting room, which in tandem seamlessly gels with TerraVin vineyard restaurant.


Wonderful food, wonderful wine and wonderful views.

When discussing TerraVin restaurant people talk about Stephanie Armstrong, the owner, as much they do about the delicious food cooked by chef David Haase. The two have joined forces and are working to perfect all the essential elements you would expect from a fine vineyard dining experience.

Inside or out, every time I go to Highfield TerraVin Stephanie is working the floor. Passionate and personable, she meets and greets, takes orders flitting constantly between tables. A people person, nothing fazes her, with her ready humour she and her team strive to deliver absolute service and a memorable experience.

Stephanie grew up in Paris and trained there as a hairdresser. She “fell into hospitality” by chance, embracing it to progress her career in Paris (Chez Garette no less) and then London.


Stephanie Armstrong is a welcoming host.

After moving to New Zealand with her Kiwi husband and then while juggling family life with the birth of her daughters, Stephanie kept her hand in the game, and when the opportunity to run her own restaurant came up in spring 2015 she seized it wholeheartedly.

“I love Mediterranean food. Marlborough has a special climate to grow great produce. Inside we have a fire when it’s cooler but really when the leaves fall, you can still sit outside on the terrace and admire the ever-changing seasonal views. Those days are often warm and still,” she says with her infectious enthusiasm.

I’d heard about her chef’s respect for ingredients. Born in Germany, David Haase trained and was soon working in Michelin-starred restaurants. But he felt the country was getting crowded so after holidaying in New Zealand in 2007 with his partner he answered an ad to work a season at Hans Herzog. The couple loved Marlborough and moved back here permanently, both working in hospitality.

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Misha’s Vineyard Unveils New Central Otago Tasting Room

Misha’s Vineyard has opened a Tasting Room in Cromwell – the heart of the Central Otago wine region. The ideal location overlooking Lake Dunstan on the main approach to Cromwell, is already proving a busy destination for wine lovers.

Vineyard owners Andy and Misha Wilkinson have a spectacular 57-hectare estate on the edge of Lake Dunstan at Bendigo, just ten minutes from Cromwell, but felt a more centrally located tasting room would be easier for guests to access. With 20 export markets established and 10 vintages completed, Misha and Andy they decided it was the right time to open a Tasting Room to showcase their wines. “We receive calls every day from people visiting from overseas who are familiar with our brand and want to visit” said Andy. “We are also seeing increased tourism, with Central Otago growing its reputation as a world-class wine and food destination. Cromwell was also recently named the fastest-growing small town in the country, so it’s really exciting to be part of that growth.”

With the wine tourist in mind, the design concept for Misha’s Vineyard Tasting Room was to create a simple yet elegant space that would enable guests to have a relaxed personal tasting experience. A French country inspired theme was chosen as the perfect backdrop for the pale blue and gold of the Misha’s Vineyard brand with the interiors and furniture being custom-built. The Wilkinsons also wanted to bring the atmosphere of the vineyard into the tasting room so three walls have large-scale photographic murals showcasing the work of renowned local photographer Tim Hawkins, who has been photographing Misha’s Vineyard since the ground-breaking ceremony in 2004. Local artist Kerry Lanauze has also created a couple of special art pieces that have become talking points for guests. The facility includes a private tasting room for members of the newly launched Misha’s Vineyard Vine Club.

With a range of single-vineyard Pinot Noir and aromatic white wines including Pinot Gris, Riesling, Rosé, Sauvignon Blanc, Gewürztraminer, as well as a late harvest dessert wine, Misha’s Vineyard offers guests a wide range of wines to sample. Misha’s Vineyard Tasting Room is open every day from 10am to 4pm, and also offers platters and small plates for those wanting to relax and enjoy a glass of wine and the views.

Misha’s Vineyard Tasting Room.

Location:        180 State Highway 8B, Cromwell 9310 (Freeway Orchard complex)

Hours:            10am – 4pm daily

Food:              Platters and small plates available


South African vineyard uses Indian runner ducks control pests sustainably


Now this is my kind of sustainable pest control, ducks!!
Check out article on Dominion Post online
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10th Annual “Crab” (Lobster) Dinner



If you are a foodie following the news, you will not be surprised that California Dungeness crab has “fallen ill” this season… making it difficult to put on our annual (and delicious) dinner featuring this seasonal favorite.
Crab’s understudy, Lobster, will be the main act this year, and we couldn’t be more excited for this seafood stand-in. We invite you to join us in our gorgeous barrel room for a fun evening with friends and the Gary Farrell team, including winemaker Theresa Heredia and assistant winemaker Brent McKoy. Together, let’s celebrate the sublime pairing of lobster and Gary Farrell wines.
Seats sell out quickly for this popular event, so don’t delay!$160 per person | $135 Grand Crew Members (two tickets at this price)

Tickets may be acquired at or 707.473.2909.
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