FOLLOW US

menu

THE CONTINUING STORY

Archive for July, 2011

11 July 2011

DECANTER & Central Otago Pinot Noir

Let it snow, let it snow, let it snow......

Dear Wine Friends
Firstly, my apologies for the lack of posts of late – I could offer 101 excuses, but I won’t. Please forgive my tardiness.

Today I awoke to a blanket of snow covering the landscape, creating a magical winter wonderland. Yes, after weeks of waiting, the snow has finally arrived in my home town of Wanaka. The ski bunnies are happy, which in turn makes the locals happy. For those that are not familiar with Wanaka – it is a small resort town located just north of the 45th parallel in Central Otago in the South Island of New Zealand. Nestled within a majestic backdrop of rugged mountains, Wanaka sits at the southern end of Lake Wanaka (New Zealand’s fourth largest lake). It is the gateway to the Mount Aspiring National Park and an array of exciting experiences. You can ski down mountains (or across); hunt for deer, wild pig or chamois (a kind of mountain goat/antelope); fly-fish for trout (brown and rainbow); fly over glaciers or jump out of planes (preferably with a parachute); you can hike up mountains or trek the terrain on horseback or mountain-bike. From boating adventures to water sports, we have experiences to suit all. Our trendy cafés and restaurants offer sumptuous cuisine created from locally produced food – and as for the wine, Central Otago can proudly boast some of the finest Pinot Noir (and white varieties) in the world. Now just to support the latter, I thought I’d share some news – at the recent Decanter World Wine Awards 2011(one the world’s most prestigious Wine Shows) Central Otago Pinot Noir ran ‘HOT’. Out of the 26 New Zealand Pinot Noirs that won Silver or above, 15 were awarded to Pinot Noir from Central Otago. Not a bad effort from the Central Otago wine producers. Of course I’m also proud to say that our Archangel Pinot Noir 2009 (which incidentally is only our second vintage) was awarded a SILVER. So naturally we are thrilled!

So, back to Wanaka and Central Otago – in case you decide to visit us, I thought I’d share a few of my ‘Hot Picks’ (in no particular order) which includes places to stay, places to eat and ‘must do’ experiences. Of course, there are numerous others which you can find on www.lakewanaka.co.nz

* Aoturoa Villa: www.aoturoa.co.nz – luxury and comfort in a boutique villa with the warmest of hospitality.
* Relishes Café: on Wanaka lake front – great food, great wine and the friendliest of staff.
* Cardona Ski field: www.cardrona.com – A great way to get your natural high – safe for beginners and with challenging ski runs for the more adventurous.
* Wanaka Skydiving: www.skydivewanaka.com – Highly recommended by my son (sorry I’m too chicken) and perhaps not if you suffer heart problems!
* Ridgeline Wine Tours: www.ridgelinenz.com – Relax and enjoy the wine. Let your host introduce you to some of Central Otago’s little gems.
* Wellwood Gallery and Archangel Wine Tasting Room: A sensual Wine and Wood Experience in a unique gallery setting.
* Puzzling World: www.puzzlingworld.co.nz – Quirky and fun, no matter how old you are!
* Rob Roy Track: Nature at its purest! Glaciers, waterfalls, alpine flora and fauna, etc,etc….simply stunning!

Are you over the age of 18?