About TW Wines
TW Wines are grown and hand-crafted along The Golden Slope – Gisborne’s very own Côte d’Or.
Power, complexity, elegance ...
Gisborne is well known as New Zealand’s Chardonnay Capital, and the narrow, five-kilometre strip from Ormond to Hexton has given rise to most of Gisborne’s Gold Medal-winning Chardonnays. The Golden Slope, as it is known, is Gisbourne’s very own Côte d’Or…
Two good friends, Paul Tietjen and Geordie Witters have vineyards on these golden slopes. Their wines epitomise what the world has come to expect of New Zealand wine – power, complexity, elegance, and excellent cellaring potential. Since the 1989 vintage, our two vineyards have won 39 national and international medals.
We hope you will enjoy learning more about our wines.
The Story of TW Wines
Paul Tietjen and Geordie Witters began TW Wines in 1998. Their wines epitomise what the world has come to expect of New Zealand wine – power, complexity, elegance, and excellent cellaring potential.
The concept of TW Wines was born on a fishing trip to Waikarimoana in 1997, where two of the group, Geordie Witters and Paul Tietjen, travelled to Lake Waikarimoana together. They talked along the way about grapes, wine, and a few other things and realised they both had ideas of producing top-quality wines. Both vineyards had accumulated several awards for wines produced from their respective vineyards, so they decided to start research into prospective winemakers and wineries that could blend the flavours from the two vineyards into quality wine. With encouragement and advice from local winemakers Geoff Sinnott and James Millton and a few ideas from friends, they set about forming a company and finding winery space.
The area along the Hexton-Waiharere foothills had been likened to the Côte d’Or region in France by an avid Burgundy fan; hence the name ‘golden slope’ was born. Similarities are due to the medium to heavy clay base material overlaid with 20 – 30cm of light black soil, the limestone foothills, and the slight elevation and slope. The Côte d’Ors’ main white grape is also the Chardonnay variety.
Both were keen to start in the coming vintage, 1998, with it being a strong El-Nino. They secured a wine consultant, winery space, and some new French oak barrels, and they were underway! Since that first year, the winemaking has moved to Kirkpatrick Estate Winery in Gisborne.
TW Wines are grown on these slopes and then combined with the best hand-picked grapes from the vineyards of these two most respected grape growers. They have a unique character with forward fruit flavours arising from the terrior.