Waitiri Creek Wines was established in 1993 by Alistair Ward, Paula Ramage and the Ward family. Paula grew up in Alexandra and the Ward family farmed for many years on Malaghan's Road, near Arrowtown. Central Otago is our heartland - no matter where we have lived in the world, it has always called us home and the opportunity to develop our own vineyard here was too good to ignore. With equal amounts of enthusiasm and naivety, the Shanagolden Block was purchased in Gibbston and planted with Chardonnay in 1994.The free-draining, northerly aspect of this Block was particularly suited to viticulture and the direct access off the highway meant that our future plans for a cellar door had now found a home on its lower reaches. Preparatory work included contouring the upper slope to eliminate any dips where frost could linger, removing the large rocks which were dotted around the block and piping the stock race that crossed the land. At that time, it was the only vineyard on that side of the road in Gibbston. In 1996, the Old Matagouri Block, 1.5km west of our original vines, was planted with Pinot Noir and a small parcel of Gewurztraminer. Our first vintage was Chardonnay produced in 1998. We had numerous evenings over countless glasses of wine discussing branding, colours, labels and bottle shape before finalising the image which has served us well since then.
Church Lane, SH6, Gibbston, Central Otago
Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, Pinot Noir
CELLAR DOOR HOURS
Open 10am-5pm over the summer months, closed Tuesday/Wednesday in Winter
Peter Saunders has spent fifteen years gaining hands on experience within all areas of the wine business, both internationally and within New Zealand. This experience has had a strong influence on his winemaking style and philosophy.
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