The Vineyard and Vines

The grapes were grown on a series of north facing gradually descending terraces in stony, freely draining soil. We specially ensured that there was a mixture of exposed and shaded fruit on the vines that are on their own roots and a quarter of a century old.

The Season

This was an ideal growing season for sauvignon blanc. A warm spring and summer were followed by a long, dry autumn, which produced extra ripening, while at the same time allowing the grapes to retain good natural acidity. A moderate crop level has ensured the wine has good concentration.

Harvest and Winemaking

Picking was carried out in different stages during April and May to get fruit with a range of ripeness and flavours. The grapes were gently pressed and the juice underwent natural fermentation by its indigenous yeasts. The fermentation of the sauvignon blanc portion was controlled by keeping it at low temperatures in stainless steel to retain its vibrant fruit flavours and aromas. The semillon was fermented in old oak barriques to give it more body and richness. After fermentation had finished these 2 components rested separately on their deposit of yeast lees (sur lie) for 10 months, to add a greater mid-palate texture. They were then carefully blended, according to taste, and before bottling.

The Wine

In this traditional Bordeaux blend of grapes the sauvignon blanc’s powerful aromas and flavours are tamed by the semillon, which adds mid-palate weight and depth. The exotic aromas and flavours suggest tropical spices, Turkish musk, passion-fruit and paw paw, supported by an array of citrus fruits and wild thyme. The wine has good concentration in the mouth but is refined and elegant with a spine of tingling minerality and crisp acidity which complement its lingering, dry finish. The French add semillon to sauvignon blanc to give the wine longevity. Thus, unlike pure sauvignon blanc, it should age well with careful cellaring, developing additional fascinating nuances over the next 5-6 years and living for a decade or more.

Download Tasting Notes

“Pegasus Bay Sauvignon Semillon is one of my favourite New Zealand Wines”

- Joelle Thomson, NZ


Wonderfully complex and engaging It's richly textured with firm acidity, making it structured and immensely long on the finish”.
- Sam Kim – Wine Writer,, NZ
“ … Harmonious and complete dynamic citrus and stone fruit flavours. Delicious, balanced and well made.”.
- Decanter Magazine
“ … young but likely to gain in complexity thanks to the balance that is already obvious. Crisp but deep”.
- Julia Harding,, UK
This is a new vintage of one of the country’s best dry whites from North canterbury’s Pegasus Bay Winery Drinks deliciously well now and can age for at least a decade …”.
- Joelle Thomson, Drinksbiz Magazine, NZ
“ … This is always a consistent wine and it ages very well - easily a decade, often more …”.
- Stephen Wong MW
“The distinctive North Canterbury wine has loads of personality…”
- Michael Cooper, Michael Cooper’s Buyer’s Guide, NZ
Totally captivating bouquet A totally delicious wine - I wish more people could discover this fantastic example.”  .
- Cameron Douglas MS,, NZ


 “… Gorgeously complex and engaging … concentrated palate that's vibrant and richly textured at the same time … opulent and powerful … mouth-watering.”.
- Sam Kim,, NZ
“ a very complex and zesty style … a rich, powerfully concentrated frame. … ”
- Nick Stock,, USA
“ … The distinctive North Canterbury wine has loads of personality … and a tightly structured, lasting finish."
- Michael Cooper, Listener magazine, NZ


“ … the palate is well balanced and quite precise and detailed, presenting a fine bead of acidity … Excellent
- Antonio Galloni Vinous, USA
“ … The nose is firmly concentrated and beautifully proportioned with elegant, but intensely concentrated aromas …. Elegant, vibrant, finely concentrated ….”
- Raymond Chan,, NZ
“Concentrated and quite funky wine, with weight and texture ..."
- Bob Campbell MW,, NZ


A very concentrated full-tilt take on the Style . A wealth of ripe lemon, cool herbs and bright tropical fruit accents as well as papaya on the palate. Flesh and acidity are well matched”. 
- Nick Stock,, USA
An absolute classic, none of our judges were surprised….. absolutely set the bar for this exotic and exciting style over the decades. …Gorgeous stuff.”
- Yvonne Lorkin, Dish magazine, NZ
This is one of the South Island’s most complex and interesting white wines ….. richly textural white, modelled on the best Bordeaux whites and putting Canterbury’s finest”
- Joelle Thomson,, NZ


“… intensely scented … medium to full-bodied with a decadent oiliness to the texture, it fills the palate … finishing with great persistence …”
- Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW,, USA
“   One of my favourite New Zealand wines and one that I buy extremely regularly and love even more every time I open it – again, it’s all about savoury flavours complex creamy notes … fresh and zesty” 
- Joelle Thomson,, NZ
“…Really leaves the taste buds quivering … A rather uncompromising, idiosyncratic Sauvignon-Semillon blend in the style of a white Bordeaux.
- Steve Tanzer,, USA
“… This is a moderately rich, concentrated and harmoniously presented Sauvignon/Semillon blend with subtle complexities and a soft, dry finish. ….”
- Raymond Chan,, NZ
“ … concentrated and complex, with loads of personality … A very distinctive wine” 
- Michael Copper,, NZ


"This wine has excellent fruit freshness, complexity balance and length. Oatmeal, stone fruit and tropical fruits with complexity. In the mouth a complex cascading quince citrus and finishing lychee awash in tropical zesty acidity with fresh ripe citrus, passionfruit, guava, lemon and pink grapefruits all offering flavours to drive exceptional length and complexity.
- Rob Geddes MW, Author of Australia Wine Vintages
”The fruit richness is balanced and cut by crisp acidity, and the palate is elegant in proportion with a fine phenolic line smoothly carrying the wine. As the wine flows, the palate tends to dryness and the flavours lead to a long, lingering finish. This is an elegantly concentrated Sauvignon/Semillon blend with fresh, fruit and a fine linearity and dry mouthfeel. …”
- Raymond Chan,, NZ
This is a seriously powerful white wine and clearly semillon is an excelsior in the blend; wonderfully decedent and invigorating, drinking well now but you can sense with its unbridled power and cut it will cellar for 10 years or more.
- Curtis Marsh,
A serious and muscular Sauvignon dominant blend with ripe green fruits and a complex smoky, flinty element.
- Wine NZ magazine


Pale straw-tinged yellow. Complex, bracing aromas of gooseberry, white pepper, ginger, quinine, crushed stone and dusty herbs, plus a hint of lanolin. Broad, spicy and quite dry, with firm acidity giving excellent cut to the subtle flavors of citrus fruits and floral oils; more concentrated than the overwhelming majority of New Zealand's sauvignon-based wines. The long finish features a bitter-edged grapefruit note that calls for a year or two of patience.
- Steve Tanzer,, USA
The flavours lead to a very long, lingering, tightly bound finish. This is a very elegant, concentrated Sauvignon Blanc based wine with very fine textures and complex flavours.
- Raymond Chan,, NZ
This is one of the country’s best sauvignon blancs, but not as you normally know it. A little Semillon in this blend goes a long way towards creating a rainbow of flavours…The result is complex, fascinating flavours with richness, depth and length to burn.
- Joelle Thompson, Your Weekend magazine, NZ
Download Reviews

Pegasus Bay

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Off Licence.
Licence Holder:Donaldson Family Limited T/A:Pegasus Bay Winery.
Licence no:57/OFF/458/2022 Exp:16/3/2025