Horses Wine and Tents a week in Hawkes Bay Wine Country New Zealand

Horses, Wine and Tents

These three things are not as different as you might think! As we get back home to Maine our recent vacation is now a memory. A month with family was totally wonderful, and we found some other great ideas spending time with our grandchildren.

For our oldest grand-daughter It all started with a pony. So for those of you who don’t know a pony is a small horse (under 14.2 hands.) In New Zealand at least it is where the younger riders, (under 17) can compete among themselves and hone their skills before graduating to “horse”.

Last year when our grand daughter rode in this event it was as a 12 year old on a horse. The outcome wasn’t so great and somewhere around this time I utter the words “why doesn’t she have a pony?” I’m certain you can all write the next part of this story so this year  Chris and I travel to Hawkes Bay Wine Country for the Horse of The Year Competition.

Watching our eldest granddaughter is a major treat and seeing her make it all the way to the Pony Grand Prix after only six months on her pony Redcliffs Bill is pretty special. She finished 8th in the entire country!

Can you tell I am a very proud grandmother?

But… you can not just watch one pony all week long and we were in one of the great wine regions of world.  Each day after watching pony work we set off to a different winery for tasting and lunch. From our week of pony trials our top two wineries are  ta da….

Black Barn

and Craggy Range

It’s not just the wine, the food is pretty special also, with each menu already paired with a wine course from each vineyard.  They are all a little different one day it might be venison tartare, a other pork with crackle or lamp. All of it farm fresh and cooked to perfection.

Our home for the week is the lovely Ormlie Lodge, an old and stately home now a small hotel. Of course I could have stayed in a tent?

Not just any tent I promise, as part of the show the horse vendors, clothing blankets saddles etc are here in force but the one vendor that caught my eye the most is this elegant tent.

Bed room, kitchen dining all in one great open floor plan tent.  This great wood and tin table seat six, and the rest of the area is filled with these wonderful sheep skin bean bags. Now that would be a great luxury.  Maybe I should bring this lovely tent home, or just find one like it at home. Now that would be a fun project!

Sigh… we’re home now and missing New Zealand already.

xoxo Lydia

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