The Gimblett Road area of Hawke's Bay is synonymous with the production of world-renowned wines. From these much celebrated shingle soils, hails the region's most exciting boutique label Squawking Magpie
The cradle of quality for Squawking Magpie is the Woodlands Vineyard in the Gimblett Gravels area, the first 4 hectares of which were planted in 1995. In 2002, a new 20 hectare vineyard was developed as a joint venture and planted predominantly in Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot and Syrah.
From the very first plantings, emphasis has been placed on creating outstanding wines by focusing on viticultural excellence. Owner and director Gavin Yortt and his team hold the firm belief that great wine comes from great grapes. And the proof is certainly there to be tasted. Squawking Magpie wines exhibit all the elegance and finesse of a unique terroir and stand testament to the superiority of single vineyard estate management and production.
Squawking Magpie, Gimblett Gravels is the flagship label, presenting wines of richness, strength and complexity, from a refined, elegant Chardonnay to a deep, concentrated Cabernet Merlot. In addition, Squawking Magpie also offer The Cabernets, a blend of Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Merlot and Cabernet Franc.
Squawking Magpie wines express wonderful regional characteristics and highlight varietal flavours, structure and balance
This success has seen the introduction of further labels using grapes sourced from single vineyard estates in renowned winegrowing areas of New Zealand.
Gimblett Gravels combines the French concept of terroir with modern day thinking to define, protect and market wine. In what is believed to be a first for winegrowers in the New World - wine growing countries outside Europe - Gimblett Gravels is basing the ultimate designation of their district according to a tightly specified soil type.
Woodlands Vineyard lies at the heart of the famous Gimblett Gravels wine growing district in Hawke?s Bay. The gravely soils of this 800 hectare sub-region were formed by continual flooding of the Ngaruroro River over 10,000 years, eventually creating a wine growers paradise: a fertile gravel bed of over 50 metres. Gimblett Gravels consistently produces red wines of the highest quality - particularly Bordeaux varieties, syrah and exceptional chardonnay.
The very special gravely soils and unique climatic conditions - together with the expertise of the winemakers - are key elements to producing high quality wines in the Gimblett Gravels district
The district has been building a reputation for producing high quality red wines from Bordeaux red varieties and Syrah. The Gimblett Gravels appellations, covering 800ha, with 65 per cent in producing vineyards, is strictly determined by the gravely soils laid down by the old Ngaruroro River, which were exposed after a huge flood in the 1860's. Up to three degrees Celsius warmer during the day in summer and autumn, compared with most other areas in Hawke's Bay, the evenings are also warmer because of thermal conductivity in the stony soils.
The extra summer and autumn heat and the contribution from these unique soils puts the terroir of Gimblett Gravels alongside some of the world's famous producers of red wine from the Bordeaux varieties. Only vineyards in the geographical area with 95% of their land in the gravely soils are eligible to become members of Gimblett Gravels. Wines bearing the Gimblett Gravels brand must be 95% from the district, and random audits are undertaken to protect the Gimblett Gravels integrity.