After taking in amazing views of Queenstown on the Skyline Gondola and Luge, Peter and I spent the afternoon visiting a few local wineries. Wine is one of my top five passions in life, maybe number one, so this was definitely a highlight of the trip! Peter and I are both big Sauvignon Blanc fans so we had originally hoped to spend a day in the Marlborough Region at the north end of the island. Unfortunately, it would have added about ten hours of drive time to our route, since most everything else we wanted to see was on the southern half of the island, so we scrapped that idea in favor of the Central Otago Region, which is primarily known for their Pinot Noir.
Our first stop was Amisfield Winery, a 15 minute drive northeast of Queenstown. I loved the look of this winery; it kind of had a dungeon feel to it. Peter and I shared a tasting since he was driving, which basically meant that Peter got a sip or two and then I drank the rest. It should be noted that the legal alcohol limit in New Zealand is fairly low, I think .05, so I had to pick up some slack for Peter. It's a tough job, but someone's gotta do it!
After tasting, we wandered around the vineyard for awhile before moving on to our next stop.
I don't know anything about vineyards, but this particular patch looked a bit rough to me. Perhaps these are the 'boxed wine' grapes? Just kidding. Fun fact: 100% of the wine I drank in college came from a box. I remember my parents came down to visit on our last day of classes one year. My friends and I were celebrating in the living room when they arrived and my dad asked to sample some of the wine we were drinking, as he had never heard of 'Franzia'. I think he almost spit it out. At the time I thought he was being dramatic, but I'm not sure I could choke down a glass now.
After looking around the property for a few minutes, we headed back into Queenstown, picked up dinner at Fergburger (highly recommend!) and ate on our patio overlooking Lake Wakatipu. We enjoyed a Pinot Gris from Amisfield with our burgers and saved the Sauvignon Blanc from Peregrine for the next night. Overall, a successful afternoon of wine tasting!