Pegasus Bay is family owned and run vineyard, started by Ivan and Christine Donaldson. The Donaldson family has now been seriously involved in wine making since the early 1970’s, and were pioneers of local grape growing and wine making.
Associate Professor and Consultant Neurologist, Ivan Donaldson is a wine writer and wine judge. He also oversees viticulture and wine styles. His wife Christine is still involved in the business though directs most of her energy into maintaining the winery's extensive grounds. She is also a passionate opera lover and has been heavily involved with Opera in Canterbury for many years. She has organised a number of operatic concerts at the winery’s natural amphitheatre. A reserve range of wines have been dedicated to Christine’s passion for opera.
Their eldest son, Matthew, graduated with an oenology degree and a postgraduate diploma in viticulture at Roseworthy College in Australia, is the winemaker. He has worked many vintages in other parts of the world, with a particular focus on Burgundy.
Another son, Edward Donaldson, is Marketing Manager and his wife Belinda supervises the Pegasus Bay Winery Restaurant.
Paul Donaldson, the youngest son, has an MBA degree and works as General Manager for the company, Pegasus Bay is an entirely family-owned and operated enterprise.
The philosophy at Pegasus Bay is to grow grapes of the highest quality, which fully express the features of the vineyard, and to handle these with the utmost respect. Minimal intervention at all stages from vine to bottle typifies their approach with a belief in traditional sustainable viticultural management, low crop levels, minimal handling of fruit during processing and gentle pressing. The wines go through natural malolactic fermentation and clarify by settling, aspiring to capture the unique flavours of the vineyard in their wine.
Amongst the many excellent wines made at Pegasus Bay, must try wines for me include the Bel Canto Dry Riesling, a divine, texturally rich wine that matches superbly with shellfish and the Virtuouso Chardonnay, demonstrating everything that is great about Chardonnay, a wine that will only get better with a few years cellaring.
Discover more: Pegasus Bay