The winery takes its name from the bay at the eastern extremity of the Wairau Valley, which was named Cloudy Bay by Captain Cook on his voyage to New Zealand in 1770. At the time of Cook’s discovery, Marlborough was in flood and the Wairau River running into the bay was full of silt creating cloudy waters.
Cloudy Bay Vineyards was a founding member of the New Zealand Integrated Winegrape Production scheme, set up to develop a programme for sustainable vineyard management, which is now monitored by Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand. Cloudy Bay’s impeccable scorecard reflects the company’s commitment to environmentally friendly winery and vineyard management practices.
The winery and vineyards are situated in the Wairau Valley in Marlborough at the northern end of New Zealand’s South Island. This unique and cool wine region enjoys a maritime climate with the longest hours of sunshine of any place in New Zealand. Cloudy Bay has 250 hectares over four estate vineyards, and long-term supply agreements with nine Wairau Valley growers. The main varieties grown are sauvignon blanc, chardonnay and pinot noir with lesser quantities of gewurztraminer, riesling, and pinot gris.
The Cloudy Bay Chardonnay 2011 is a reflection of its sunny origin, expressing intense aromas of peaches, nectarines, aromatic herbs and biscuit. A light entry of stone fruit becomes a slippery midpalate that re-focuses to an aromatic and mineral finish.