Central Otago Wines
Central Otago is a unique wine region for New Zealand as it does not grow any of the country's famous Sauvignon Blanc but also unique globally for being the most southerly commercial wine region in the world. The region is famous for its fruity and full-bodied Pinot Noir with about ¾ of all vineyards in the region growing this grape variety. One of our favourite Pinot Noir regions here at World Wine.
Central Otago is the only region in New Zealand with a truly continental climate, with large daily and seasonal temperature extremes. At 300m in elevation, vineyards are protected from the cold ocean winds by high mountains reaching 3700m. The soils are also different to the rest of the country, with heavy deposits of rough-edged mica and other metamorphic schists in silt loams.
Historically, the subregion of Bannockburn has seen the most success. However, the region has seen significant growth in recent years and other sub regions are also flourishing.