January 8th, 2013 at 7:02 am by David Farrar


On Monday we headed to Bannockburn, near Cromwell, where we spent the afternoon wine tasting. First stop was Terra Sancta, where former NZX boss Mark Weldon gave us a veryĀ knowledgeableĀ rundown on the various grape areas, soil minerals and blends. Sadly as my suitcase was already full, I could only buy a couple of bottles of their lovelyĀ Mysterious Diggings Late Harvest Gewurtztraminer. Was also very taken by theĀ Terra Sancta Estate Slapjack Block Riesling, which is unusual for me as I am not normally a Riesling person.


You can actually do a walk through parts of the vineyard.


After lunch we also went to Mt Difficulty and Felton Road. Mt Difficulty also had some great wines. Didn’t get excited over anything at Felton Road, but by then had tried well over a dozen so might just have been a tired palate.

We did lunch at Bannockburn Hotel. It was decent pub food, and pleasant service.

I must mention the appalling service at the (otherwise lovely) Cardrona Pub. We did dinner there on Sunday, and after drinking outside, moved to the restaurant area for dining. The others ordered a bottle of wine which was served up. As I was driving I was on soft drinks, so asked for a diet coke. The waitress said that I should go and queue at the bar to get one. Hugely unimpressed.

My last night in Wanaka was last night. Have been very fortunate with the weather – almost non-stop sun. It is a minor miracle I have not become a lobster.