It was Kiwi Max Annabell's dream to have a vineyard and winery, and, returning from London in 2000 with his English partner Kate Norman, the couple took the plunge. They purchased a unique hillside site and Pukeora Estate was created and planted. The views are stunning, the cliff top looks out over the plains and rivers of Central Hawke's Bay to the Ruahine Ranges.The small winery is where the 20 or so tonnes of grapes harvested each vintage from the hillside vineyard are crafted by Max into premium wine.
Low cropping allows concentration and complexity in the wine, and careful winemaking retains fresh flavours and creates elegant but powerful wines.
Pukeora, meaning "hill of good health" in Maori, was originally a sanatorium for Anzac troops returning from the First World War, then a home for the physically disabled. Used as a venue, the historic buildings continue to be a part of the local community.
The soils are free draining limestone with a clay layer above. The site is 250m above sea level on a north facing slope, with the rugged backdrop of the Ruahine Ranges provinding a rain shadow, creating an ideal ggrape growing climate.