We had picked two wineries that were just south of Napier and had been recommended by local wine guides.
Mission Estate Winery is in fact New Zealand's oldest winery dating back to the 1880s.
It looked quite majestic standing up on the hill with beautiful gardens and lots of walkways. Unfortuntely we couldn't enjoy the scenery that much as by the time of our arrival the rain was pouring down :-( So we just hopped inside and lined up for some wine tasting – for free...
They had three whites and three reds plus a desert wine on the menu that day. I only liked their Cabernet Sauvignon – and was looking forward to the desert wine. And hey the waiting was worth it. What a great flavour in your mouth. Couldn't resist and bought a bottle – for just $16.50 it's almost like it was free...
Just down the road was Church Road Winery. Not as classy but more expensive. Since I was driving I only tried their white wines and can definitely recommend their Pinot Gris. Both wineries offer tours through their cellars, but unfortunately only at certain hours and we didn't happen to be there on time.
After all that alcohol it was time for something sweet so we headed to Silky Oak, a chocolate factory a little further south towards Hastings. Would they have tastings, too? THEY DID!!!! Normally you can even watch them work but today the factory was closed.
Didn't matter, the shop alone was worth a visit. MOUNTAINS OF CHOCOLATE!!!
In every shape and color and flavor. And the best thing – their chocolate is gluten-free AND they have a good variety of dark chocolate that is dairy-free as well.
I was in heaven. Literally speaking. We tried and bought and ate... and because that wasn't enough we hopped into the café next door and helped ourselves to some delicious hot chocolate. Do I have to mention that we all felt kinda sick after that – but wonderfully happy?
We almost ended up doing one more tasting. But the Tui Brewery was closed.
Written and contributed by maerchen82