Central Otago – Pinotland

Lake Dunstan

New Zealand's southernmost wine region has so much more to offer than its increasingly compelling Pinot Noir.

Sunny ‘Central’, as New Zealanders call it, has been utterly free of the effects of Cyclone Gabrielle on its 2023 harvest. When I spent a couple of days there last month one of the region’s 140 wine growers confessed to ‘survivor guilt’. Many of these growers have such small landholdings that their wines are made at one of the contract wineries such as the Central Otago Wine Company run by Dean Shaw and co-founded by actor Sam Neill of Two Paddocks.

Looking at...