Torrent Bay is made by Anchorage Family Wines, founded, and owned by the Drummond family. Before growing grapes, the family were involved in pip fruit orchards and the family can trace their farming history in Motueka back to 1866, when they were one of the pioneers in horticulture and agriculture in the region.
The first of the vines were planted by the Drummond family in the spring of 2000 in rich river loam beside the mouth of the Motueka River, Ray and his son Gavin had considered grapes in 1992 but decided not to proceed, after a Ministry of Agriculture report deemed grapes “too risky”.
The vineyards are in the Nelson region of NZ surrounding the Motueka township and benefit from balmy sea breezes and some of New Zealand's consistently highest sunshine readings which make it ideal for grape growing.
Winemaker: Tony Southgate
Chief winemaker Tony Southgate has a vision to make wines that are immaculate, clean and that everyday people can drink. He joined Anchorage in 2019 to form a strong team.
The former New Zealand Winemaker of the Year (2012) said he has been working on showcasing the fruit’s purity and fine balance, to lift the bar and become more competitive.
It’s a huge difference from where he first started, initially studying economics at school before training to become a butcher, then a cabinet maker and eventually a wine maker. It was at the boutique butchery he worked at in Auckland where he realised that very attention to detail was what he excelled at. “And that set me on the pathway for excellence. I don’t want to make mediocre wine.”
But it was his wife that first introduced him to wine, and together they used to attend many festivals throughout the country. His favourite drop? He likes heavy reds, particularly from France, or a New Zealand Syrah, as well as a Pinot Noir that has some identity to it.
He’s also mad on motorcycles - fast ones, and admits to having a few of those, for the days he’s not working, fine dining or drinking wine.
Tasting Notes: Dry, with gooseberry, blackcurrant leaf and subtle juicy tropical flavours, herbaceous as well with hints of lime. This leaves a clean fresh palate and nicely balanced mouthfeel. Chilled or enjoyed with sea food.