Wine authority The Real Review crowns Felton Road as Winery of the Year New Zealand 2024

by | May 7, 2024 | News

One of Australia’s leading authorities in wine, The Real Review, has today announced its prestigious ranking of the top wineries of New Zealand, with Bannockburn producer Felton Road being crowned Winery of the Year New Zealand 2024. The results follow an intensive tasting of over 3,500 wines with some big movements up and down the list, and a number of new entrants to the top wineries.

The list is independently ranked by The Real Review tasting team, led by critics Bob Campbell MW, Huon Hooke, including Stephen Wong MW and others.

In top position for the first time ever, Felton Road, the winery that made Bannockburn famous, has never ranked lower than sixth place. Felton Road Winemaker Blair Walter said, “We are honored to be awarded Winery of the Year New Zealand in 2024 by The Real Review. We’re blessed in Bannockburn with our four vineyard sites offering such consistent and distinctly high quality wines. We’ve been farming our vineyards organically and biodynamically for over 20 years now which brings additional harmony and nuance to the wines.”

Completing the top five ranking of this year’s list are Destiny Bay (#2, Waiheke Island), Church Road (#3, Hawke’s Bay), Ata Rangi (#4, Martinborough) and Craggy Range (#5, Hawke’s Bay).

Leading New Zealand MW Stephen Wong said, “I’m honoured to have recently joined Bob Campbell MW and The Real Review team for the Top Wineries of New Zealand–it’s the seventh release of this list, but the first which I have been part of. It is really heartening for me to see increasingly diverse representation in the list of winemakers, the stellar results from Central Otago, the outstanding dominance of organic producers and smaller regions like the Wairarapa, North Canterbury and Waiheke punching about their weight class alongside the juggernauts of Marlborough and Hawke’s Bay. It is an exciting time for New Zealand wine across almost every style and grape variety. There is much cause for optimism.”

Bob Campbell MW said, “Top Wineries of New Zealand 2024 is the Who’s Who of fine wine producers creating new benchmarks as a measure of excellence. It is a one stop shop for the latest and greatest New Zealand wines and we are thrilled to reveal them to New Zealand wine lovers.”

Released annually to highlight excellence in New Zealand wine, The Real Review awards the top New Zealand wineries that consistently produce excellent wine. The Top Wineries list represents a national benchmark that shows where New Zealander’s favourite winery is placed amongst its peers. This year has seen producers catapult up the rankings significantly with Fromm, Dog Point, Obsidian, Cloudy Bay and Black Estate all jumping from rankings below 50 into the top 30.

The representation of the different wine regions in the list and the high proportion of the top wineries with certified organic vineyards is also notable. Within the top 60, 34 wineries in total (56.7%) have some or all of their vineyards certified organic. Marlborough predictably leads the pack with 48 wineries on the list of 157, with Central Otago shining at 36 wineries. Auckland surprisingly has 13 entrants, 11 of which are on Waiheke Island.

A nod to women in wine, 35 of the listed wineries have female winemakers at the helm, representing over 21% of the total wineries on the list – an ever-increasing presence that continues to grow year-on-year.

Must-try wines from the Top Wineries of New Zealand 2024 traverse chardonnay to syrah styles with Gibbston Valley China Terrace Chardonnay 2018, Felton Road Block 5 Pinot Noir 2022, Cloudy Bay Te Wahi Pinot Noir 2021 and Te Mata Coleraine 2022 being standouts.

Kiwi wine lovers will have the rare chance to sample over 80 of this year’s leading wines at the Top Wineries of New Zealand 2024 Tasting. Felton Road’s Blair Walter and other wineries will pour their wines at the Glasshouse in Morningside, Auckland on Saturday 20th July, tickets cost $89 and are available from

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