Masahiro Danbara of Southern Cross Ltd


I have just returned from my very first visit to Tokyo - and what a great week I had in this huge Metropolis!

I was blown away by the amazing Japanese hospitality – everybody was so welcoming and helpful – maybe I didn’t need to be so nervous after all!

It was great to finally meet our Importer Mr Danbara of Southern Cross.  We had only started working together 1 1/2 years ago, but Japan has quickly become our most important Export Market

Mr Danbara is working hard to promote Blackenbrook, and our wines are already available from Hokkaido to Okinawa, from Osaka to Tokyo and in countless places in between!


Our new Shangri-La labels with Marilyn Andrews colourful paintings of Nelson look great on the Japanese wine shelves.  They are positive and vibrant, standing forNelson’s laid-back lifestyle in the sunwhich is so different to life in Tokyo!  The labels are hugely popular and open many a door for us…

I’ve met many customers of Southern Cross, chatted about our wines and vision, and made new friends.

We hosted a wine dinner at Bistro Jiro Betterave and the fabulous New Zealand Natural Night, where we introduced New Zealand Adventure Tourism, Honey, Tea, Cosmetics and of course our wine to 170 guests – it was a buzz!

… but it was not all hard work. Mr Danbara and his friends introduced me to many kinds of amazing Japanese food:  Ramen, Soba Noodles, Nabe, Sushi,  Sashimi,  Unagi, Okonomiyaki … and of course the delicious Sake!  Cuisine is an art form in Japan and I can’t wait to go back!