Tag Archives: mt difficulty wine

Friday 14th of November


I got a little wind or sunburnt on the steamer trip yesterday. ( Sue P, I know you stressed to be careful 😉 ) so I walked guiltily into town to by some face sunscreen before todays wine tour.  The Appellation Central Wine tour was amazing and well worth the money. There were already two solo travellers on the mini bus when I got on and we picked up a very lovely couple from Melbourne. We stopped off at Waitiri Creek first, they are a small vineyard in comparison to others, they make around 3000 cases of wine a year and do not distribute outside the country. They have had concerts on the grounds , that would be pretty cool to attend. They are also make 2000 christmas cakes a year that are prepared the usual way and then they have pinot noir poured over them. At $40 NZD a pop that is quite a cottage industry. The cellar door is in 100 year old church that was moved there for the purpose of being their cellar door. Well worth the visit

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We then drove to Bannockburn and went to the Carrick Wines Vineyard the wines were nice , the Rosé was very high in alcohol content. We had lunch here , which was an anti pasto platter, everything was delicious. We sat and chatted , it was really nice to have a laugh and talk to like minded people.

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We then went to Mt Difficulty wines and had a selection of their wines. Their Pinot Noir is very nice, I had to buy a bottle.

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Then it was off to Remarkable Wines back in the Gibbston region. His  Pinot Noir was also fantastic. He will be releasing in Australia soon. If you ever see any of his wines you should definitely try them. He had a man there ( a friend, an investor we weren’t quite sure) he  was quite handsy. He wouldn’t stop interrupting Richard ( the wine maker ) which was a little disappointing as Richard’s schpeel was very interesting. He exports to Australia for a small fee. They also have a little Tavern on the property that looked like it would be a nice place to hang out.

The tour is great, our guide David was very informative and had all the qualities to make a guide great.

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If you are in the area, you should go on this tour. I would do it again

It turned out that the lovely couple from Melbourne and I were staying in the same complex. So we and the young man from York drank on for a little while longer.  I could have chatted on for hours but the day had been long and we had drunk a bit .
The lady from Melbourne is studying cyber racism. I would have liked to hear more about her opinion on a few hot topics.

I really enjoy the tours as much as I enjoy the people that I meet on them.

Today, I drove to Dunedin. I stopped off at the small town called Lawrence and bought a burger from a pub where I was the only person dining. There were a couple of old timers in the public bar but I was shown the lounge , the burger was ok. I had to spell pale ale for him, that didn’t help though and he asked if that was an export. It was a pretty small town 😉 It was just nice to stop for a while.

I am staying on the executive floor at The Scenic Hotel, Dunedin City. So far it is very nice.

Nandos in New Zealand ( and other countries) have chicken livers on the menu. Yes, I know some people will find that offal 😉 but I don’t mind a chicken liver. I finally got around to having some tonight. The extra hot sauce was super hot The chicken liver salad was huge and the regular Portuguese roll was enormous. A small Samoan village could have feasted for at least one meal. I had to take some of the bread away as it seemed like a waste and I have oil and balsamic at the hotel.
This hotel also does the weird thing of putting a doona between two king sized sheets. What is with this? I don’t think I am a fan.

I am very tired , so sorry about any spelling/grammatical errors. I think I will sleep well tonight.

NZ- the land of many bridges.


I had the best night sleep I have had in a very long time in the Lake Tekapo cottage that I stayed in. It was very clean and well worth the money. I am the type of person that travels with alcohol wipes to wipe down things like door handles and remotes. I think me doing that here may have been redundant as it was so clean.

I set off for my drive to Queenstown

I took the turn off to Twizel, they promote themselves as the “town of trees” it was a very sleepy town. I nearly nodded off half way through buying a sausage roll. Instead I wrote a postcard to mum and posted it.

I drove past a couple of “home of Icebreaker” sheep farms. I wanted to stick my head out the window and thank the sheep for producing smell resistant wool ;). On the outskirts of Omarama there all these rock mounds and pretty flowers I should have pulled over and taken a photo but I was afraid of getting stuck behind the elderly man driving at 30 klm below the speed limit again. Speaking of speed limits there are signs along the major roads giving driving advice , like slow down or showing the turn coming up. Having not driven in NZ before I am not sure if they are driver specific ( as there are signs telling you the speed you are driving) or if everyone gets told to slow down. I approached every sign with the anticipation of it saying ” your driving is sweet as” but it never happened.

I stopped off at the Roaring Meg lookout, it was beautiful.

these trees looked more amazing in real life

these trees looked more amazing in real life

the water was a beautiful blue in real life

the water was a beautiful blue in real life

i should have sat here and enjoyed the serenity.

i should have sat here and enjoyed the serenity.

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At this point, I was going to turn back and drive to the Mt Difficulty cellar door but I just wanted to continue doing something that was going well. I did take the turn off to go to Arrowtown though, as people I like have raved about it. I went to Saffron restaurant for lunch. I was the only person in there which seemed odd , as it gets rave reviews. My crisoy pork and chargrilled squid salad was delicious,

The Saffron restaurant crispy pork and chargrilled squid delicious salad.

The Saffron restaurant crispy pork and chargrilled squid delicious salad.

a poster for a movie that is up there as my favourite "feel good " movie. ( even  though it comes with a tinge of :( ). If you haven't seen it . You really should.

a poster for a movie that is up there as my favourite “feel good ” movie. ( even though it comes with a tinge of 😦 ). If you haven’t seen it . You really should.

The lunch was just what I wanted/needed not too big but light and filling. I had a glass of Mt Difficulty sav blanc and had another regretful moment for not going there (the cellar door).

A wise man had told me to be careful on the roads in New Zealand as there were a lot of police cars on the road. I didn’t realise that he meant there were a LOT of police cars on the road. I reckon every tenth car was a police car. I did pass a customs car, it couldn’t have been off to deal with my luggage though as the only declared contents of my luggage are a 100 ml bottle of olive oil and a 100 ml bottle of balsamic vinegar. It also appears that my luggage still hasn’t crossed the ditch.

I got to Queenstown and checked in at my accomm , I had read a tripadvisor review where someone complained about the doona being put between two sheets and thought that must have been a one off but no. The doona is between two sheets . Hopefully that is less icky than I imagine it. The vista is awesome though and the staff have been lovely. I have a laptop charger from the lost and thank you box. Sadly all the phone chargers are from the last millenium so I should have taken up the offer of a free one from the owner of the last nights stay.

The drive to Queenstown was , thankfully , uneventful it was very scenic and very windy ( both pronunciations). The Yaris is pretty sh!t ( said with a NZ accent) at going up hills. I was very glad I had not opted to go up Mt Cook as I would still be chugging on up it hours later. 😉 .

I walked into town to shop but by the time I got there I was too hot to make any good decisions. Tomorrow, I have booked in for a flight to Milford Sound but by all reports the weather will not see that happening. So if I still don’t have my luggage I am going shopping and sending QBE the receipts.

My clothes are washed and I am ready to start tomorrow as a new day. Choice bro! 😉