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      Central Otago

      Below are details about the Central Otago wine region of NZ. You can refine your search results by searching any of the links below.

      Central Otago
      Latitude
      Altitude
      200 - 400 m
      Growing Season Rainfall
      Mean January Temperature
      15.6 to 19.5°C
      Harvest
      Early April to late May
      Wineries
      38
      Website
      Cracka Rating 0

      About Central Otago

      Central Otago is New Zealand's most southerly wine region, as well as being its most inland and boasting the highest altitudes in the country. It has nailed its colours to Pinot Noir that occupies around 70% of plantings in Central Otago. Their success with the varietal seems to gain ground every year with wineries like Felton Road gaining rock star status. The first vines were planted back in 1864, but nothing serious happened until 1972, when an experimental vineyard was planted near Alexandra. This was followed with further plantings at Rippon Vineyard and Lake Wanaka in 1975. The first commercial release from the region was in 1987, a Pinot Noir from the Gibbston Valley winery. Located on the 45 parallel, the landscape of Central Otago is an untamed beast. Surrounded by mountains littered with lakes and gorges, it experiences the greatest seasonal temperature variation of any other wine region. This presents both a challenge and a gift to grape growers. Containing the sub-regions of Bendigo, Bannockburn, Wanaka, Cromwell, Alexandra and Gibbston; the climate is truly continental. The summers are hot and dry, whilst the evenings are cool and the winter months very cold. The region tends to have few disease issues due to the dry climate, and frost never seems to be a problem because most vineyards are sitting on steep slopes. The soils are dramatically different from any other region on New Zealand. The vineyards situated on steep slopes and terraces have their roots in dark schist rock, whilst others sitting on valley floors and lakes have siltier, sandy soils. Style wise, the Pinot Noirs of Central Otago are generally elegant and long-lived with intense black cherry fruit when young. Locals also claim the wines carry the aroma of the thyme that grows wild in the region. (Image supplied by Wooing Tree)

      Buy Central Otago Wines Online

      2013 Three Miners Central Otago Pinot Gris

      2013 Three Miners Central Otago Pinot Gris

      This rich little number out of Central Otago is certainly in a more sumptuous rather than steely style. However, it still has some grace with subtle smells of ripe pears, stone fruits and blanched almonds on the nose, with a hint of lemon rind. Th...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      NV Quartz Reef Methode Traditionelle

      NV Quartz Reef Methode Traditionelle

      If you are going to go the whole hog and buy proper bubbly then Methode Traditionelle bottle ferment is the only way to go as it gives the resulting wines texture, elegance, grace and loads of complex toasty brioche/croissant flavours. It is almos...

      Cracka rating100
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Gris

      2015 Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Gris

      The Gris phenomenon continues to gather momentum and the Kiwis are doing it brilliantly especially from the cool region of Central Otago. This dramatic region produces excellent examples of aromatic whites and will be one to watch in the next few ...

      Cracka rating70
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Noir

      2015 Mt Difficulty Roaring Meg Pinot Noir

      The Pinot Noirs of Central Otago are fast becoming firm favourites in our office and none hit the Pinosity factor higher than the wines from Mt Difficulty. The Roaring Meg is their entry-level red, capable of delivering amazing bang for your buck....

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Mt Difficulty Pinot Noir

      2015 Mt Difficulty Pinot Noir

      Hailing from Central Otago, this is a fruit-driven, richer style of Pinot Noir that shows lots of ripe red cherries, spice and dark plums on the nose, with just a hint of earthiness and dried herbs. The palate is medium-bodied and plush, with a sp...

      Cracka rating90
      Region: Central Otago
      2014 Rabbit Ranch Pinot Gris

      2014 Rabbit Ranch Pinot Gris

      Central Otago is turning out to be an appropriate place to grow grapes, considering its remoteness, hot days and cold night. A place of extremes it would seem, but capable of greatness and famed for its Pinot, Chardonnay and now Pinot Gris, as the...

      Cracka rating70
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Rabbit Ranch Pinot Noir

      2015 Rabbit Ranch Pinot Noir

      Welcome to the remote ranges of Central Otago where rabbits run wild or so goes the legend. It’s also said that these rabbits pilfer the Pinot grapes and eat them; obviously these are rabbits with sophisticated palates. This is attractive, easy dr...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Two Paddocks Picnic Pinot Noir

      2015 Two Paddocks Picnic Pinot Noir

      Owned by actor Sam Neill, the Two Paddocks 'Picnic' is made for earlier drinking, and shows lovely aromas of ripe strawberries, fleshy plums and cherries on the nose, with hints of licorice and toast. The palate is medium-bodied and quite fruity, ...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2013 Mt Difficulty Long Gully Pinot Noir

      2013 Mt Difficulty Long Gully Pinot Noir

      Long Gully Pinot Noir is hand crafted in very limited quantities and only released in outstanding vintages. Crisp blackberry and Bing cherry interplay with baronial floral notes alongside an assemblage of sweet brown spices. These same lifted dark...

      Cracka rating0
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Two Paddocks Pinot Noir

      2015 Two Paddocks Pinot Noir

      Two Paddocks is owned by renowned actor Sam Neill, who is as enthusiastic about his wines as he is about his movies. Hailing from Central Otago, it's a plush, fruity style that shows elegant, fragrant aromas of ripe cherries and berries, along wit...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2014 Mt Difficulty Target Gully Riesling

      2014 Mt Difficulty Target Gully Riesling

      Riesling like the Target Gully tells a story about its origins. This is Riesling for Riesling fanatics, made in some of the most treacherous and dramatic vinous backdrops in the world where it’s cool and the soil is expressive. You could describe ...

      Cracka rating90
      Region: Central Otago
      2014 Hinton Hill Country Pinot Noir

      2014 Hinton Hill Country Pinot Noir

      The first person who made wine in the Central Otago region must have been a visionary or slightly nutty, perhaps just lucky, because it’s not the most forgiving landscape. But those Kiwis are made of hardy resolve and they’ve gone to prove that Ot...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2012 Bannock Brae Goldfields Pinot Noir

      2012 Bannock Brae Goldfields Pinot Noir

      This cheeky Central Otago pinot is already being weighed down with gold medals from NZ wine shows, and it's no wonder! It's a bit more earthy savoury than the 'Barrel Selection' pinot noir, but still has dark cherries and plums in the mix along wi...

      Cracka rating90
      Region: Central Otago
      2014 Chard Farm River Run Pinot Noir

      2014 Chard Farm River Run Pinot Noir

      This is quite a lovely, elegant style of pinot noir out of Central Otago that isn't a 'fruit bomb'! Svelte, sweet smells of red and dark berries waft out of the glass, along with some dried thyme and subtle purple florals. The palate is medium-bod...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Mt Difficulty Sauvignon Blanc

      2015 Mt Difficulty Sauvignon Blanc

      There’s no difficulty finding good Sauvignon Blanc in New Zealand, but it is difficult growing it in some of the most rugged terrain on earth. The good people at Mt Difficulty love a challenge and this aromatic white shows the variety well. It’s a...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2015 Hinton Hill Country Pinot Gris

      2015 Hinton Hill Country Pinot Gris

      There’s a few exciting things happening in the New Zealand wine scene, one of which being the advent of Pinot Gris to match the enormous amount of Sauvignon Blanc the country already produces. The region of Central Otago is wild and remote but gre...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2010 Misha's Vineyard The High Note Pinot Noir

      2010 Misha's Vineyard The High Note Pinot Noir

      This offering from Misha's Vineyards certainly hits the high note in concentration and depth. It's no shrinking violet, and shows dark, brooding smells of dark berries and plums, with generous sniffs of mocha and savoury, licorice spices. The pala...

      Cracka rating90
      Region: Central Otago
      2012 Misha's Vineyard Lyric Riesling

      2012 Misha's Vineyard Lyric Riesling

      Dry in style, this is quite a juicy, fruit-driven riesling that shows lots of lemons, limes and jasmine florals on the nose that is highly intoxicating. The palate is light, bright and tight with citrus and tropical flavours, laser-like acidity, a...

      Cracka rating80
      Region: Central Otago
      2014 Grasshopper Rock Pinot Noir

      2014 Grasshopper Rock Pinot Noir

      Ahh Grasshopper! There's something a little kung fu about this excellent little Pinot Noir as it seduces the senses and sashays over the palate like a smooth tai chi move. It's a fuller-bodied, fruit bomb style that shows lots of cherries, dark pl...

      Cracka rating90
      Region: Central Otago