Respect for Akarua as a beautifully crafted Central Otago wine style is now well recognised. First planted in 1996 Akarua's 50 hectare estate is located in picturesque Bannockburn. Wines are 'hard won' from soils that are mostly broken schist and sand. There are extremes of hot and cold; frosts in winter, and dry nor'westers that devigorate the vines. The site's topography is dominated by ancient alluvial terraces bordered by parapets of hill blocks that stand vigil against prevailing conditions. From this background the Akarua team's vision is clear: to reveal the special and unique characters of the terroir, united with the qualities of each vintage so that they are truly reflected in each bottle that you experience.
Akarua's quality reputation is continuing to gather momentum with recent awards including the Champion Pinot Noir Trophy for Akarua Pinot Noir 2009 at the Royal Easter Show 2011 and a Gold Medal awarded to Rua 2010 at the recent Decanter World Wine Awards 2011.
Matt Connell - winemaker - completed a Post-Graduate Diploma in Viticulture and Oenology in 2001. Following University, Matt spent six months at Wynn's Coonawarra Estate in South Australia before moving on to Elk Cove Vineyards in Oregon's Willamette Valley, working with Adam Godlee Campbell. It is here that Matt fostered his love for Pinot Noir and cool climate winemaking.
After three years as Assistant Winemaker at Elk Cove - including working a vintage for Peregrine Wines in Central Otago in 2003 under Michelle Richardson - Matt returned to Central Otago to take up the position of Winemaker at Olssen's of Bannockburn in January 2005. When Matt is not making wines, he is found chasing trout, or spending time with his American wife Beth and their two young children, Emma and Noah.
Produced from estate grown fruit this off dry Riesling offers fragrant stone fruit and lime aromas backed by lovey hints of ... More>
This pale beauty floats its seamless scents of pear and lychee across the nose with an added touch of orange blossom thrown ... More>
Central Otago’s cool nights are well suited to the production of méthodes. Using Akarua’s pristine Pinot and Chardonnay ... More>
Another benchmark Central style from the Akarua team: 71% Pinot Noir, 29% Chardonnay, lees-aged for 18 months. A delightful ... More>
The Akarua flagship has much going for it: floral, fragrant, seductive, intense, its exclusively estate fruit is matured in ... More>