Founder and owner of te Pā, Haysley MacDonald traces his ancestry back to the early Māori settlers who landed on Wairau Bar 800 years ago. He whakapapas to ancestors who have worked this land for generations. In 2003 Haysley and his family started a new adventure, converting their dairy and crop farm into vineyards and in 2011 te Pā was born.
With the river to the south and the sea on their eastern boundary at Cloudy Bay, these two bodies of water ensure continuous airflow throughout the growing season, moderating temperatures and assisting vineyard health.
The Wairau Bar is not vast, but it encompasses a rich variation of soil types, from rich, fertile loams overlaying alluvial deposits to the sandy, silty soils of their seaside blocks. It’s a treasure trove for their winemaker, producing fruit of varying characteristics that come together in their distinctive wines.