Otago New Zealand Map

When making still wine in the prestigious French appellations, Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Riesling are seldom blended with other varieties, although opportunities such as Bourgogne passe tous grains must be noted. In this regional appellation of Burgundy, the Gamay is blended with Pinot Noir. When it comes to

New Zealand superimposed on Europe and North Africa with isotherms for mean temperature in the warmest month of 16°C, 19°C and 19°C, 22°C. New Zealand’s key winegrowing regions are nearer to the equator than the wine regions of France, but they are all significantly cooler regulating winegrowing in France, the political is never far from the natural. Blending two or more varieties in an appellation is one means of more fully capturing the natural environment because the different varieties express its different qualities.

Otago New Zealand Map Photo Gallery



In the mid-1960s an Australian scientist, James Prescott, attempted to establish the polar limits of the vine by comparing France and Australia. He used the mean temperature of the warmest month as the indicator of the thermal regime of the two countries, preferring it to the degree-day because it was more immediately comprehensible and correlated very closely with the degree-day. He concluded that in France the isotherm of 18.7°C was the best estimate for the polar limit of the vine.

I take a similar approach in Figure 4.1 where the temperatures of the French and New Zealand winegrowing regions are compared. The 20°C isotherm of the warmest month just clips the northern tip of New Zealand and the 19°C one includes parts of Northland and coastal Bay of Plenty as well as the vine-growing regions of the Gisborne Plain and coastal Hawke’s Bay. Nowhere south of there does the 18°C isotherm appear. On the Prescott criterion, much of New Zealand would be considered too cool to mature grapes.

Nevertheless, vines are being grown very successfully in these regions and some of the most flavourful grapes and most expensive wines in the country are produced from fruit grown in the Wairarapa region northeast of Wellington, in parts of Canterbury and in Central Otago in the South Island. The explanation lies in the limitations of Prescott’s method. But we can definitely pronounce that New Zealand is a cool-climate region for the vine – how cool, I will discuss later in the chapter.

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