Toast Martinborough is a wine festival that happens every year in the town of Martinborough in the Wairarapa valley about 1 hour from Wellington. The valley has it’s own micro-climate that is warmer than Windy Welly and so provides the perfect environment for growing grapes and producing wine. This year 8 wineries were taking part and we purchased our tickets about 2 months before the event (number of attendees is capped) and got a bus out from Wellington early on the morning of the 19th Nov to make it to Martinborough for around mid-day. When you arrive in the town you are given a band with a chip inside which you can top up with money and this is your currency for paying for wine & food as you make your way around to the different wineries. There are shuttles that bring you from one winery to the next but we walked to some as it was a nice day and some are very close to one another. Every winery had their own live music and the atmosphere was different in every location (but gradually as the day wore on I think they were all just as messy!) You can also order cases/bottles of wine from the different wineries and have them delivered to your home address. The only downside was that wine stopped being served at 4:30pm a bit too early in my opinion, but this is an attempt to control people and make sure things don’t get too out of hand, which it had in previous years.
I can’t wait to go back to Martinborough again some weekend the festival is not on, take our time visiting a few wineries and maybe do a spot of camping!