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A love of local produce

Posted by Website Admin on June 15, 2017

A love of local produce

It’s safe to say our head chef Jason Brown is crazy about food – creating the end dish, sourcing local product and meeting the folk who produce it.

This is why, when he’s not foraging on the Lodge estate and beyond, Jason spends a fair bit of his time outside the kitchen visiting local producers, tasting their wares and dreaming up delicious ways to incorporate new products into his ever-growing retinue of divine dishes for appreciative guests and Lodge restaurant patrons. 

Whether just down the road here in Marlborough, located in the top of the South Island, or just over the Cook Strait in Wellington, some of Jason’s favourite local produce suppliers include:

Hellene and Simon, Cranky Goat Ltd

Mike, Meaters of Marlborough

Daniel, Kaikoura Cheese

Terry, Ora King Salmon

Premium Game

Emily, Old Road Estate

Favian & Flavian, Viavio

Martin Bosley, Yellow Brick Road

Melvin, Nuggety Creek Farm

A sample menu for the Lodge

Cranky Goat curd ravioli, pea, chorizo

North Canterbury lamb rump, babba ganoush, courgette, whipped feta

or

Ora King salmon, sweetcorn, shallot, cavolo nero

Coconut parfait, stem ginger, blueberry, pink pepper

Tallegio, Kalamata olive

 

See our section on Wine & Food for more menus and more information about guest and restaurant dining.

Join us

Contact us to arrange to dine at our restaurant for lunch or dinner, or stay at the Lodge and enjoy full breakfast and lodge-style dinner – [email protected] | +64 3 570 5700 | www.themarlboroughlodge.co.nz/food-and-wine  

 

 

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A world away, yet oh so close

Posted by Website Admin on June 01, 2017

A world away, yet oh so close

In times gone by, New Zealand was part of the exotic and intriguing 'South Pacific' region, a long journey into the unknown by only the most intrepid of travellers. These days, thankfully, New Zealand is an easy to get to and much-visited destination for many travellers, and on many a bucket list of those yet to experience the delights of 'down under'.

Marlborough, at the top of New Zealand's South Island, still has a touch of that remote and untouched paradise about it. Luckily for travellers, however, Marlborough is right in the centre of New Zealand and easily accessible from just about anywhere.

In terms of flying there are plenty of options, with Blenheim Airport just 10 minutes drive from the Lodge:

  • Air New Zealand flies direct to Blenheim from main cities Auckland (1hr 25 mins) and Wellington (25 mins)
  • Sounds Air flies from Wellington (25 mins), Kaikoura (30 mins), Christchurch (50 mins) and Napier (60 mins)
  • Helicopter transfers from Christchurch, Nelson and Wellington, or another location, direct to the Lodge are also possible.

Other transfer options include ferry and car:

  • From Wellington, take a 3 hour ferry ride on foot or with your vehicle. Cruise across the Cook Strait and through the stunning Marlborough Sounds onboard Interislander or Blue Bridge ferry services; It’s then a short 20 minute drive from Picton to the Lodge.
  • From Christchurch, it’s approximately a six hour drive through the beautiful Arthurs Pass and past Saint Arnaud alpine villages nestled on the shores of Lake Rotoiti.
  • From Nelson, it’s just 80 minutes drive to Blenheim, passing through the ancient beech forests at Pelorus River – where The Hobbit was filmed – and past Havelock, the Greenshell mussel capital of the world.

Once you’re here in Marlborough and enveloped in all the brilliant scenery – not to mention world-class wine and delectable local produce – it takes no imagination at all to feel you’re a world away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life.

Marlborough has just been included in Wine Enthusiast’s Top 10 World Wine Destinations 2017, amongst numerous other accolades, and you’re never stuck for ideas of what to do during your stay here. Simply enjoy the peace and tranquillity, take a wine tour or a seafood cruise to celebrate the region’s icons, enjoy the delicious cuisine offered at many eateries around the region including breakfast and dinner at the Lodge, get active with hiking or biking the many trails, or go on the hunt with fishing and hunting trips.

Whether you're here for a holiday, a special celebration or for a mini break from the Lions Tour, ensure take your camera, because every minute – from sunrise to sunset – is a great photo op in Marlborough.

You can relax and enjoy the region’s splendour for as long as you’re able knowing that, while it might be hard to tear yourself away at the end of your stay, the logistics of leaving Marlborough and heading to your next port of call are as easy as when you arrived. 

Check out our Packages page to see what we have coming up at the Lodge to tempt you to Marlborough.

 

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Local Secrets

Posted by Website Admin on May 25, 2017

Local Secrets

Part of the joy of visiting a new place is discovering those wonderful “local secrets”, and here at Marlborough Lodge we’re all too happy to share those Marlborough secrets with our guests so they can enjoy them for themselves.

Every town has its share of locals’ favourite hangouts, and in Blenheim, Ritual Cafe is one example.

 

This central Blenheim cafe has an eclectic style, a food cabinet to die for and of course fantastic coffee. You can either chat to the locals, or unwind with an adult colouring in book in the retro booths if you so prefer.

The Marlborough Farmers’ Market deserves a mention.

This chilled out Sunday morning event at Blenheim’s A&P Park is as much a chance for the region’s producers to sell their wares as it is for locals to meet up and have a coffee, a freshly prepared, locally-sourced hot breakfast and a good chat.

And you haven't really experienced Marlborough without a gourmet pie from The Burleigh accompanied by delicious coffee.

Another hidden source of amazing Marlborough produce is the home - literally - of honey producers J Bush & Sons, who have made local honey for 100 years. Only the locals know that you can fill your own containers straight from their vats, once you locate their wonderfully original pack-house at the end of an overgrown driveway. Expect to find friendly beekeepers full of knowledge who are always keen to share information as they pour golden honey from the tap for you.

Come summer, Hedgerows Hydroponic Strawberries is a must-go, where you will have no trouble spotting the huge, luscious red berries growing within the glasshouses before you even park the car. Hedgerows’ stall, open all summer, is small and friendly and the strawberries picked daily - plus they sell real fruit ice cream too.

And what goes better with strawberries than bubbles? Luckily, Marlborough Lodge is smack bang in the middle of the region’s wine country, so there’s plenty of options to pair your punnet of fresh red goodness with.

One of those options is just a short drive or bike ride from Marlborough Lodge: Methode traditionelle Champagne makers, No1 Family Estate, where the Le Brun family have an impressive 12 generations of Champagne making behind them.

But back to the fruit which in Marlborough grows aplenty, and not just the grapes. Best of all, in many cases you can pick your own, from cherries to raspberries or blackberries - just ask Marlborough Lodge’s staff to point you in the direction of the nearest orchard.

There are many more local secrets than can ever be mentioned here, but we can’t give all of them away now can we, you'll have to come and discover a few of your own to share with us…

 

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Marlborough Adventures

Posted by Website Admin on April 10, 2017

There are those who are happy to sit with a book and relax for their entire holiday and those who are happy to do that for five minutes, then are itching to get out and about, get busy and have some adventures. If you're the latter, or you need to entertain an energetic partner, there are plenty of options here in Marlborough for adventure. 

There really is no shortage of options for those seeking an active, adventure-filled holiday, where busy days of exploring Marlborough are beautifully balanced with sumptuous gourmet dinners and perfectly matched wine on the lodge’s relaxing veranda, or in the well-appointed dining room.

The Marlborough Lodge is located in prime Marlborough wine country, which offers many adventures in itself, but there are many more strings to our bow, we are also mere minutes from some of the best golf courses, mountain bike tracks, nature walks and hunting and fishing spots.

At the Lodge you can do archery under the trees, swim in the heated pool, play tennis next door on the grass courts, or get the heart pumping with a bike ride or run along the local flat, vine-fringed roads.

The Lodge offers a range of activities including archery, tennis, biking and scenic helicopter flights.

Further afield, experienced heli-adventure guides can take you to rarely visited trout fishing rivers surrounded by majestic alpine scenery, or secluded hunting grounds high in the mountains, in just minutes - you’ll not only come home with great stories to tell, but freshly-caught dinner as well for the chef to transform into a thing of beauty on your plate.

For those more into spectacular scenery, simply climb aboard the helicopter and be taken on a scenic flight above Marlborough’s stunning landscapes and enjoy a gourmet mountain-top picnic.

For a more ground-based activity, located just a short drive from the lodge are the Blenheim, Marlborough (Fairhall) and Rarangi Golf Clubs: The choice is yours. For mountainbikers, there are many kilometres of track to explore nearby, from the mixed grade trails on the Wither Hills and Taylor Dam to the more advanced coastal splendour of Mt Robertson above Whites Bay or, slightly, further afield, the Wakamarina.

Other experiences on offer include Marlborough Sounds cruises, wine tasting, Maori culture, gourmet foods, eco encounters, garden and farm tours. Whether you’re travelling alone or with a group, the Lodge can create can personalise adventure activities that suit you.

There are many options for getting out and about and enjoying all that Marlborough has to offer, including walking, cruising the Marlborough Sounds and exploring the Marlborough wine region

 

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Long Luxury Weekend: Sydney to Marlborough

Posted by Website Admin on April 07, 2017

Swapping the busy streets of Sydney for the peaceful sunny vineyard-filled plains of Marlborough was a breeze and the rewards were many, including a massive drop in stress levels from the moment I arrived in this beautiful province.

I grabbed the 9.45am Sydney-Blenheim Friday connection on Air New Zealand - a Qantas codeshare, which got me into Wellington at 3pm NZ time. I had plenty of time to enjoy a coffee from the Fuel counter, shop at NZ-made Icebreaker who make great merino wear, then get on my flight to Blenheim. A short 25 minute flight over the stunning Marlborough Sounds - ancient sunken valleys featuring one-fifth of New Zealand's coastline and I was there by 6pm.

Arriving at Blenheim Airport, I was met by Toby, a friendly young man from The Marlborough Lodge. Within minutes we were driving the sunny lanes flanked by lush, grape-sprinked grapevines, and arriving at the beautiful Victorian Lodge nestled in amongst the vineyards and trees. A convivial drink with fellow Aussie General Manager Peter White in the Great Room later and I was encounced in my very stylish and comfortable Premium Suite with views over the 16 acre estate.

After a quick relax on my super comfy bed and a rejuvenating splash in the double tub in the palatial ensuite, it was off to  pre-dinner drinks and canapes in the courtyard, in front of the roaring outdoor fireplace. Marlborough sauvignon blanc in hand with a platter of delicious Bluff oysters in the shell invitingly standing by, to say I was winding down was rather an understatement.

We were then summoned to the Dining Room for an endless and truly spiritual series of delicious courses served lodge-style and made up primarily of locally-sourced produce. Not only did chef Jason Brown make it taste heavenly, but it was almost too pretty to eat.

  

It was then back to the courtyard and fireplace, for a digestive port and some shared stories with the other guests, before trundling off for a peaceful night's rest.

The next day, fortified by a full breakfast again featuring great coffee and some delicious smoked mussels with scrambled eggs, I was off on a Marlborough Icons Tour - wine tasting by morning, waterfront lunch, and seafood cruise by afternoon. Beautiful bliss and a really great taste of the best that Marlborough has to offer.

A divine repeat of the night before with a longer bath and more fireside lingering, followed by another fab sleep and tasty breakfast. Then a relax about the estate until I headed off for my 11.25am Air New Zealand/Qantas flight back to Sydney, via Auckland this time for a different shopping experience. Home by 5.40pm Australia time - plenty of time to get myself organised for back to work Monday.

What a brilliant weekend!

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Lunch, Marlborough Style

Posted by Website Admin on October 07, 2016

While staying at Marlborough Lodge, there is every reason to enjoy the best of Marlborough’s world-class food and wine scene by taking a long, very long, lunch.

The lodge is perfectly located in the heart of Marlborough’s famed “golden mile” of wineries, and there are no shortage of choices for a sumptuous cafe, cellar door or restaurant lunch. Or, you can choose to seek lunch further afield to combine the outing with a drive through stunning Marlborough scenery or a cruise in the stunning Marlborough Sounds.

Golden Mile lunch

The closest all-year winery lunch options to The Marlborough Lodge are Saint Clair Vineyard Kitchen, Rock Ferry Wines Cafe, Wairau River Wines and Twelve Trees Restaurant at Allan Scott Wines – all within easy biking distance, some even a short walk.

Within minutes of leaving your Marlborough Lodge suite you can be seated at your sunny courtyard table, crisp sauvignon blanc in hand, in summer, or fireside with a glass of red in winter.

Also nearby is Vines Village Cafe which offers a more casual lunch experience, perfect for families, with sweeping views overlooking a private pond to the northern ranges, and a shopping village to explore following lunch.

Menus in all these establishments focus on fresh and local ingredients and flavours, so you can expect a great Marlborough taste experience every time.

    

Urban lunch

Blenheim is a short, easy drive from The Marlborough Lodge.

On the banks of the Taylor River you’ll find Raupo, which offers a French-infused menu combined with Kiwi favourites. For a more casual bite to eat and a great coffee, Watery Mouth Cafe overlooking central Seymour Square offers a selection of lunch options with a view, or try 23 Grove Rd Coffee House on the main highway opposite the train station (there’s parking round the back).

For a gourmet twist on the classic Kiwi pie, head for The Burleigh delicatessen on New Renwick Road. Don’t let the small, unassuming shop front put you off - within its walls are incredible award-winning pork belly, steak and blue cheese and jerk chicken pies, and pork shoulder sausage rolls, along with delicious coffee.

Scenic lunch

Head west from The Marlborough Lodge where vineyards turn into lush green valleys, and you’ll eventually find yourself in Havelock; head east, and it’s Picton. Either destination marks one end of the celebrated, scenic Queen Charlotte Drive - make a day of it, and do lunch on the way!

In Havelock, enjoy fresh Greenshell mussels at the Slip Inn overlooking the marina, with the knowledge that this seafood was grown in the very water you are looking at.

In Picton, Le Cafe on the waterfront is as popular with visitors as it is locals for its good coffee and fresh food. Across the intersection is Cafe Cortado, where seafood and pizza feature high on the menu while set slightly back from waterfront crowds you’ll find Gusto renowned for its coffee.

There’s no shortage in Marlborough to treat yourself to a delicious lunch in a beautiful place - the most difficult part is choosing where to go.

Luxury cruise lunch

For a deliciously decadent dining experience, you could head out on our private launch MV Tarquin from Picton for an onboard chef-prepared gourmet lunch paired with Marlborough wine. Enjoy the beautiful scenery while you dine alfresco on the deck or inside the cabin, where the stunning views are just as good.

While staying at Marlborough Lodge, there is every reason to enjoy the best of Marlborough’s world-class food and wine scene by taking a long, very long, lunch.

The lodge is perfectly located in the heart of Marlborough’s famed “golden mile” of wineries, and there are no shortage of choices for a sumptuous cafe, cellar door or restaurant lunch. Or, you can choose to seek lunch further afield to combine the outing with a drive through stunning Marlborough scenery.

  

Picnic lunch

Have the kitchen whip you up a delicious picnic lunch and let your exploring take you where you wish - be it the beach, riverside, to the hills, among the vineyards, in a park or in the forest.

Just ask one of our staff for ideas, directions and transport if required. 

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Renovation Tour

Posted by Website Admin on September 06, 2016

Peter White, our new General Manager, takes you on a snapshot tour of The Marlborough Lodge mid-renovation. The extensive renovation inside, outside and throughout the 16 acre grounds is on track for our November 2016 opening.

 

Peter & the Lodge in the Media

Posted by Website Admin on September 03, 2016

Our new General Manager, Peter White, was featured in the business section of the Blenheim Sun yesterday:

Peter started three weeks ago and is full on into overseeing the extensive renovations, hiring staff including chef and housekeeping teams, as well as finalising interior design, marketing collateral and more.  

The Beauty of Marlborough

Posted by Website Admin on August 28, 2016

For those who live here and those who visit, Marlborough's beauty is obvious and immediately enveloping.

From the sprawling plains of vineyards - glossy green in spring and summer, and burnt orange in autumn - fringed by rolling hills and snowy peaks in the distance, to the lush coves and tranquil green waters of the Marlborough Sounds it's amazingly diverse but consistantly gorgeous. It's a keep-your-camera-ready sort of place where you'll happily fill your memory card in no time. 

Sunrises and sunsets light up the skies with astounding colour, and during the day - being the sunniest region in New Zealand, it's usually sunny - the brilliant blue skies cast an ever-changing light over this stunning region.

For those who haven't experienced it or want to relive a previous visit, check out this new Tourism New Zealand video:

Tourism New Zealand - Souvenirs from Reel Factory on Vimeo.

Creating a Luxury Lodge

Posted by Website Admin on March 02, 2016

The tranquillity and peace will be disturbed in May when our contractors arrive to begin a large scale renovation of the property to transform it into a high end luxurious lodge to welcome guests from all over the world.

Come November The Marlborough Lodge will open its doors and offer guests 10 contemporary suites over two floors, each a unique luxurious haven with brand new ensuites and balcony access.

Downstairs, a new commercial kitchen will be home to a team of chefs who will create delicious breakfasts to give you a great start to the day, appetising canapés prepared demonstration kitchen-style to help you wind down at the end, leading on to a lavish 3-course dinner accompanied by local and international wine.

Also downstairs, two dining areas, a lounge, bar and library – all refurbished with a modern vintage vibe – will give you plenty of options for relaxation or business.

Keep an eye on our Facebook page for regular updates on the renovations and glimpses of the finished lodge as each part comes to gorgeous fruition.

Would you like to book with us?

What our customers say

Beautiful spot in Blenheim. Absolutely loved our stay at The Marlborough Lodge, we enjoyed the Kingfisher room which had beautiful windows from the buildings church history, was hugely spacious and had a stunning outlook onto the surrounding grounds. Amazing food and the best omelette I've ever had for breakfast! This place is very special and we look forward to returning in the years to come! Big thank you to the lovely staff!

KLM

Hard to beat. Thank you for your warm hospitality xox.

Rebecca Judd - Postcards TV Show

This is a fabulous property - love it

Sue

Thank you for a fantastic 3 days! Beautiful location, outstanding food and a fantastic team. Will be back, for sure!

Betsy & Jamie - LA