Seeing the sun rise always helps me to put my life in perspective. Rising with the sun and getting back into a natural circadian rhythm refreshes the dreariness that settles down during the malaise of the modern grind.
The road that leads to somewhere misses everywhere else.
” Two roads diverged…and I…took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference…” -Robert Frost
Being able to see things from another’s perspective is such a wonderful learning experience. All it takes is a little patience and willingness to seize opportunity and never deflect responsibility. You are what you believe in.
It is never to late to take a leap of faith.
“More than half of all humans now live in cities. The natural habitat of our
species, then, officially, is steel, pavement, streetlights, architecture,
and enterprise–the hominid agenda.
With all due respect for the wondrous ways people have invented to amuse themselves and one another on paved surfaces, I find that this exodus from the land makes me unspeakably sad.
I think of the children who will never know, intuitively, that a flower is a plant’s way of making love, or what silence sounds like, or that trees breathe out what we breathe in….
I wonder what it will mean for people to forget that food, like rain, is not a product but a process.
I wonder how they will imagine the infinite when they have never seen how the stars fill a dark night sky….
What we lose in our great human exodus from the land is a rooted sense, as deep and intangible as religious faith, of why we need to hold on to the wild and beautiful places that once surrounded us.”
– Barbara Kingsolver, 2002, Small Wonder
At 45º south, Central Otago is the world’s most southern viticultural region. Surrounded by mountains, the region has many deep gorges and ridges, and is interlaced with lakes. It is a fairly desolate region, well suited to intensive viticulture. I heard somewhere over the last couple days that there isn’t a vineyard in Central within 200km (125 miles) of a traffic light.
In general, the the semi-continental climate of the region features very cold winters, hot summers, cool night time temperatures and very low rainfall. Soils are mainly glacially derived loess soils, with rich deposits of mica and schist. Close to 80% of vineyards are planted to Pinot Noir, though the region also produces exciting Riesling, refreshing Pinot Gris and minerally but rich Chardonnay.
Generally the wines have a vibrant and transparent fruit profile with a richness and intensity from increased luminosity of the sun combined with the hot days and cool nights in the dry, continental climate. Central Otago features the most inland location in New Zealand: a mountainous ridge just northeast of Bannockburn.
Overlooking Bannockburn from the ridge of Bannockburn Sluicings, the old gold mining gully on Felton Road. Somewhere on the ridge in the distance is unofficially the most inland location in New Zealand.
Bannockburn is currently the most intensively planted sub-region of Central Otago. Bannockburn is a North facing crescent bordering the Kawarau River as it flows across the base of the Cromwell valley to its meeting with the Clutha River. It is home to a majority of the most highly regarded vineyards and wineries in Central Otago.
Akarua is the winery where I’ll be doing my first vintage in 2011 and is located in Bannockburn. The vintage is steadily approaching and chances are we will begin work late this week, or early next week. For a bit of info on Akarua, visit my earlier post Central Otago 2011: Vintage at Akarua or visit their website http://www.akarua.com/. Stay tuned and I’ll be doing me best to keep you updated on the vintage.