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Vidal Estates
Kathy Sullivan

VidalSummary: Vidal Estates is about joining wine with food and friends. To emphasize this concept Vidal has an onsite restaurant. Located in the Gimblett Gravels area of Hawke’s Bay the winery has vineyards in some of the highest quality grape growing areas.

Vidal Winery Estate is a combination winery, conference center and restaurant. The winery in the Gimblett Gravels Wine Growing District is certified by Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand, BioGro and ISO 14001.


Vidal is one of the oldest boutique wineries in the Hawke’s Bay region. Anthony Joseph Vidal emigrated from Spain to New Zealand in 1888. He worked for his uncle, Joseph Soler, a winemaker. In 1905 Anthony Joseph Vidal purchased a racing stable property and converted the stable into a winery. The winery remained in the Vidal family until the 1970’s. In 1976, the current owner of Vidal Estates, George Fistonich purchased the winery. George added the restaurant in 1979. This was the first winery restaurant in New Zealand.In order for the winery to have an onsite restaurant a change in legislation was needed. In 2008 the restaurant's Executive Chef was judged New Zealand Chef of the Year.



Vidal owns 60 hectares of grapes. Most of the of grapes are from the Hawke’s Bay region. The majority of red grapes are sourced from the unique Gimblett Gravels District. These include Syrah, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. Vidal owns some of these vineyards, leases and contracts with growers. According to winemaker, Hugh Crichton, Chardonnay and Syrah are varietals to watch for in the future.

Four designated barrel rooms are located in the 1905 horse stables purchased by Anthony Vidal. Wines for Vidal are bottled at Villa Maria in Auckland. Three barrel tastings took place on a recent visit. Chardonnay 2010 went into the barrel in mid-March. The wine was on the first lees. There were pear and oak notes on the aroma and taste with citrus notes on the taste. Some 2009 Syrah from the Gimblett Gravels area will be bottled soon. This barrel wine was a dark purple to black color. There was cedar, black pepper and black fruit on the aroma and taste. A 2009 Cabernet Sauvignon was dark purple with nuances of black fruit and spices.

VidalVidal Wines

Vidal produces several varietal wines including Chardonnay, Merlot/Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc, Syrah and Viognier.

The Reserve Chardonnay Hawke’s Bay 2005 was a light yellow. The aroma and taste offered nuances of nuts, caramel and citrus. The finish was crisp with layers of tastes on the finish. Merlot Cabernet Sauvignon Hawke’s Bay 2008 was a blend of Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon and Malbec. The result was a ruby wine with black fruit notably blackberries on the aroma and taste. In addition the taste had spicey notes. The crisp finish was fruity with tannins. Reserve Hawke’s Bay Syrah 2005 was ruby with an aroma of violets and cedar. The taste had dark fruit, violets and cedar notes. The finish had bold tannins with fruit notes yielding to spice.

VidalA special event room is filled with ambiance. Oak barrels line both sides of the elongated room. Wrought iron chandeliers enhanced with crystals and a pair of eight feet tall metal candlesticks adds more mystique to the room. The back wall has two large oak barrel halves decorating the wall. A long table with a white tablecloth is centered in the middle of the room. Overhead is a skylight providing some sunlight to the room.

When you make plans to visit Vidal Estates Winery be sure to consider staying for lunch or dinner at the Vidal restaurant.

Vidal Winery Estate
913 St. Aubyn Street East
Hastings 4156, Hawke's Bay, New Zealand



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