Winemaking in Central Otago

Did you know?

The first winemaker attracted to Central Otago was John Desiré Feraud who came to the area during the Dunstan gold rush of 1862, and after investing in a claim became rich overnight. Feraud, who was from a French winemaking family, recognised the potential for grape growing, and leased 40 hectares in Clyde where he planted the first wine grapes in 1864.

Over the next 20 years, he made a variety of wines even winning a prize for his Burgundy-style wine in Sydney in 1881. His farm, named Monte Christo Gardens, was an extensive garden of fruit trees, vegetables and 1200 vines, along with a winery which still stands today.

During this period, viticulturalist Romeo Bragato also visited Central Otago and declared the area as one of great potential for grape growing. However Feraud and Bragato’s enthusiasm for grape-growing did not spread to others and when Feraud left the region, commercial winemaking ceased. Over the next hundred years, no one tried to grow grapes again and the focus for Central Otago was on sheep farming and fruit production.

It wasn’t until the late 1970s/early 1980s that grapes were once again planted with the first commercial wines being produced again in 1987. So it’s been a little over 20 years since the riches of the land have been rediscovered.

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Wine 101: How to Save Leftover Wine

See the Wine Spectator video, How to Save Leftover Wine

Have some leftover wine from your last dinner party? It would be a shame to let it go to waste—and you don’t have to! Learn the best ways to store leftover wine and the most important preservation factors to keep in mind in this quick tutorial.

OK, so for most of us in NZ, all we do is return the screw cap to the wine bottle. But if you want to reduce the rate of oxidation, then I would recommend you click on this link and watch the video from Wine Spectator. I especially liked the Pro tip at the very end of the item.

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Why amateur wine scores are every bit as good as professionals’

By Mark Schatzker and Richard Bazinet | Updated May 25, 2018

Article summary

Few consumer products offer as staggering a range of choice as wine. You can buy a bottle of Dark Horse Big Red Blend for $8. Or for around $500, you can get a 2012 bottle of Sloan Proprietary Red. Yet for each bottle, the same question applies: Is it any good?

The rise of the wine-rating crowd

Cellar Tracker online
 Cellar Tracker online

In 2004, Eric LeVine — then a group program manager at Microsoft — launched CellarTracker, a site where amateur wine enthusiasts can rate wines. Today, CellarTracker is the web’s most popular “community” or “crowdsourced” wine review website, containing 6.3 million reviews from 113,000-plus users for more than 2.2 million different wines.

Amateur and professional wine scores correlate very tightly

How similar? We ran a statistical tool called a Spearman correlation and got a figure of 0.576. A perfect correlation is 1. An utter non-correlation is 0. A score of 0.576 may not sound impressive at first, but it can actually get worse than 0 — a negative correlation, which is what you would see if you compared, say, shortness with the likelihood of playing professional basketball.

Amateurs appear more expert than the experts

It looks very much like the enthusiasts actually do a better job of agreeing with the experts than the experts do with each other. That might sound odd, but out of thousands of wines we analyzed, only a handful contradicted this pattern. Simply put, if you want to know what the experts think, the best place to look appears to be, of all places, CellarTracker.

The better the wine, the more experts agree with the amateurs

How do wine enthusiasts compare with the experts like Robert Parker and Jancis Robinson? Very well. Javier Zarracina
How do wine enthusiasts compare with the experts like Robert Parker and Jancis Robinson? Very well. Javier Zarracina

There is also a tendency for scores to converge as wines improve in quality. This is evident in the arrow shape of the clusters in figures comparing CellarTracker with Wine Advocate and CellarTracker with International Wine Cellar. Average scores, furthermore, are high. On Wine Advocate, the average score was 89, on International Wine Cellar it was 91, and it was 17 out of 20 for Jancis Robinson. On CellarTracker, it was 89. This tells us that experts and enthusiasts alike don’t seem to be spending a great deal of time scoring mediocre wines.

Read the full article

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Hawke’s Bay Wine – Autumn/Winter edition

Click cover image to view the autumn & winter issue. Opens in a new tab
Click cover image to view the autumn & winter issue. Opens in a new tab.

Hawke’s Bay Winegrowers presents your digital issue of Hawke’s Bay Wine – Autumn/Winter edition

  • Studying Syrah berry size
  • Turning vision into reality – a business strategy for Hawke’s Bay Wine
  • Ngaruroro WCO – cautious optimism

In every issue we profile Hawke’s Bay Wine companies and personalities, wine from our region and associated sectors. We offer up a number of informed viewpoints, cover the news and present a range of wine-related feature stories.

Do you have news relating to Hawke’s Bay Wine Sector?

Advertising enquiries can be directed to Kite Communications

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The A – Z of wine

Glengarry’s Sunday ramblings of all things vinous, grain and glorious. Issue 9, The A – Z of wine.

Goodbye Winter. Can’t say we’re sorry to see the back of you, what with the wind and the rain and the flu; when all’s said and done, there’s only so much a warming glass of red wine will fix.

However, we turn our gaze and our palates to the more benign months with a glowing shimmer of anticipation. It’s reboot and refresh time, and what better way to kick things off than with a quick A-Z of things vinous for your general edification. From A for acidity to Z for Zinfandel, there’s bound to be a little bit of something in there to intrigue and interest many of you.

What else? We feature Zephyr wines, the appropriately-named vehicle for the impressive winemaking skills of Ben Glover. Bach Brewing, only three years old but already so weighted down with medals. An exciting new offering from Gisborne’s Matawhero winery, the Irwin Chardonnay. Belvedere vodka – Polish know-how 600 years in the making. The under-the-radar genius of Champagne Moutard.

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Blue Wine Is Now a Thing You Can Drink

(From the they must be joking file – Ed)

Blue Wine Is Now a Thing You Can DrinkRosé wine? So passé. Red and white? Please, those are centuries old. But now, some good news for those seeking the next big thing in beverages: a Spanish winemaker is crafting an electric blue wine.

“Try to forget all you know about wine,” the website for the brand, Gik, reads. “Ignore all the preconceptions and standards regarding [the] wine industry and turn a deaf ear to what the sommelier told you in the wine tasting last week.”

The vino is created from an undisclosed combination of red and white grapes that has “no aging procedure.”

If you want to get technical, Eater reports that the “juice is hued neon blue with anthocyanin (a pigment found in grape skin) and indigo (a dye extracted from the Isatis tinctoria plant), and a non-caloric sweetener is added as well.” A bottle sells for about $11, and is currently available in Spain, France, the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, and Germany, with U.S. expansion in the works.

So why blue? Eater asked co-founder Aritz Lopez, who made a case for his new product, even though he’s never had any winemaking experience. Apparently, Lopez and team were inspired by the concept of “red oceans,” which represent “business markets saturated by specialists (sharks) who fight for the same variables and for a reduced number of clients (fish), and end up in water turned red.

And how it’s necessary to revert this, by innovating and creating new variables, back to blue. This seemed poetic for us to turn a traditionally red beverage into a blue one,” López states. Form, meet poetic function. The only remaining question: will this turn our teeth blue, too? Either way: salud!

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Hermitage’ in New Zealand: the Origins and Development of the Te Kauwhata ‘Hermitage’ Syrah

Dr. Gerald Atkinson has written an interesting piece on the origins of Syrah in NZ and how it was first planted at Stonecroft.

Reproduced courtesy of Stonecroft Wines

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Review Wine like a Kiwi – Vivino


Click on image to read – Review Wine like a Kiwi @ Vivino

2015-06-14557d519451ea1Every region where English is spoken places its unique stamp on our shared language. New Zealand and Australia come up with some of the most creative and fun phrases — the kind that really turn up the fun meter when added to tasting notes. Continue reading

By Stephen Favrot, 23rd April 2015

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Hawke’s Bay – NZ’s Premium Red Wine Region

Over thousands of years, 5 major Hawke’s Bay rivers moved and formed valleys and terraces to create over 25 different soil types from clay loam, to limestone, to sandy and free draining gravels and red metal.

Read all about NZ’s Premium Red Wine Region or download and read later.

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Wine Glass Guide – Vivino


Click on a wine glass to learn more @ Vivino
Click on image to read – Wine glass 101 @ Vivino

You’re probably aware that there are glasses intended for red wine, and glasses intended for white wine. You may even know that red wine glasses are generally larger than white ones. However, can you recognize the subtle differences in form between a Cabernet and Pinot glass, or how each was designed to target a specific spot on the palate?

For today’s lesson, we’ve lined up the eight types of stemware stocked within any respectable restaurant and bar worth its salt (or grapes, for that matter). Explore the chart below and prepare to be schooled. Continue reading

By Vivino, 10th Jun 2015

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The 8 Worst Mistakes Wine Drinkers Make – Vivino

Click on image to read – The 8 Worst Mistakes Wine Drinkers Make @ Vivino

Here’s an example

1. Filling your wine glass up to the brim

Wine isn’t beer. Just because some wine glasses can fit an entire bottle of wine in them, doesn’t mean you’ll want to fill your entire glass. It makes for a heavy glass, looks silly and makes the wine difficult to drink and enjoy.

Rather, you’ll want to stick to about a 5-ounce pour. This will allow you to swirl and sniff your wine and drink and enjoy your wine with ease.

Continue reading




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