Why the name Stanley Estates?
Stanley the Land Rover took us on a 30,000 kilometre adventure - from Bath UK, where we both gained degrees in Horticulture, to Cape Town, South Africa over 15 months in 1991. It was named after Sir Henry Morton Stanley, the famed African explorer.After our epic journey in Stanley Rover, we spent a further two years under African skies establishing an export program on a vegetable farm just north of Cape Town. After a year in the UK from 1994 we travelled the world as fruit technologists, auditing growers and pack-houses for UK retailers.
We wanted to run our own business in a beautiful and stimulating environment, so in 2003, when we came across the exceptional terrain of the Awatere Valley we bought 11 hectares at the foot of Mount Tapuae-O-Uenuku (the footprint of the rainbow) and began planting grapes in earnest.The first wines under the Stanley label were were from the 2009 vintage. We really hit the ground running fast; our 2010 Sauvignon Blanc won the Best International Sauvignon Blanc Trophy and the Best New Zealand White Trophy at the 2011 London International Wine Challenge. Our wines have been regular winners of top awardsever since.
The vineyard is nestled under the cool gaze of Mount Tapuae-O-Uenuku (from Maori it poetically translates as the ‘Footprint of the Rainbow’), as seen on the Stanley Estates label. At the top of the Southern Alps, it strongly influences the climate, as its rain shadow gives the Awatere Valley low humidity and rainfall. In this terroir, combined with sunny days and cool nights, it is perfect for slowly ripening the grapes to allow the unique flavours to develop. These specific climatic characteristics, give the Awatere valley grapes a distinctive herbaceous and gooseberry taste, quite different to the wines produced elsewhere in Marlborough.