Tauranga isn’t grape growing country so Mills Reef Winery is an unexpected find. The art deco Mills Reef Winery building gives a clue though as to where the grapes used to make the wines are grown – Hawkes Bay. Red wines are a specialty at Mills Reef and their Reserve Cabernet Merlot 2016 won a trophy award at the Royal Easter Show Wine Awards this year. There’s a tasting room onsite so before taking a seat for a meal you can taste some of the wines to help you decide what to order from the wine menu.
We like to go to Mills Reef on a sunny day so we can sit outside and look out over the gardens and green space.
On our most recent visit we especially liked the food – a coconut braised Thai duck salad, a roasted duck dish with chunky chips, followed by a dessert platter for two.
So if you like visiting wineries and find yourself in the Tauranga area we recommend Mills Reef Winery in Bethlehem. If you’re planning a special occasion and want a memorable arrival you can touchdown in a helicopter to combine a winery visit with a scenic flight.