Muddy Water was born almost a quarter century ago when viticulture pioneers Jane and Michael East recognised the potential for grape growing in the Waipara Valley. They first planted the vineyard in 1993 with a range of experimental varieties - what worked, stayed, and what didn't thrive was pulled out. The first wines released in 1996 quickly established Muddy Water Estate as one of the first real high quality producers in the area, and much of our wine today is still being made from those original vines.
The Easts retired in 2011 after two decades of winemaking accolades and passed stewardship of Muddy Water to the Thomas family, who continue to take the winery from strength to strength under the philosophy of minimal intervention, creating wines that fully express both site and vintage.
Nestled in the lee of the Teviotdale Hills in the Waipara Valley and sheltered from the cool ocean breezes, the Muddy Water estate is an ideal spot for cool climate viticulture. The 12 hectare estate is flatter across its front section, then steep up the back as it goes up the north-facing hillslopes. The blocks are interspersed with a small olive grove and a naturally renewing spring winding its way through the property. All the wine is made and bottled on-site in our hand-built straw bale winery just a few hundred metres from the vines.
The name Muddy Water is a literal translation of 'Waipara'.