Paulownia 2016 Rosé and 2012 Pinot Noir

This review has come about by meeting a man, Alan Cook who has been helping his son and daughter-in-law settle into our neighbourhood. He’s an ex-Royal Australian Navy man, who while commanding a ship took part in three joint-venture exercises with the New Zealand military. One of the friends he made in these exercises was Vaughan Paul, then with the R.N.Z.A.F., who established Paulownia Estate in Masterton. After visiting Vaughan, Alan brought back some wine for me to taste and enjoy. So this is published over our long ANZAC weekend in recognition of the long and strong ties between Australia and New Zealand.

Paulownia Estate is the Wairarapa wine venture of Christine and Vaughan Paul who purchased a former dairy block on Manaia Road, east of Masterton in 1995 with the intention of growing contract fruit for local wineries. Their first plantings were of Riesling and Merlot in 1998 growing their acreage with Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc to 9 ha over the next 4 years. The varieties are planted to 3 ha of Pinot Noir, all clone 10/5, 2 ha each of Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc, 1.5 ha of Riesling and 0.5 ha of Merlot. The Pauls introduced their ‘Paulownia’ wines with small quantities until 2008 when they decided to devote more of the efforts to their own wines rather than contract growing. The name ‘Paulownia’ refers to the Paulownia trees that overlook their vineyard, and it is also a play on their family name. Vaughan tends to the viticulture, and the wines are made by Karl Johner of Johner Estate. The annual production is approx. 1,200 cases.


  • Paulownia Wairarapa Rosé 2016
  • Paulownia Wairarapa Pinot Noir 2012

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