Central Otago, New Zealand
Felton Road was established in New Zealand's Central Otago region by Stewart Elms in the early 1990s.
Under the ownership of expatriate Englishman Nigel Greening since 2000 this is acknowledged as one of the world's finest addresses for Pinot Noir.
The wines from Felton Road continue to improve. As Nigel explains, this is only partially explained by increasing vine age and bio-dynamic cultivation. He is still learning that whilst Central Otago is similar to Burgundy in its climate, higher UV levels mean that the phenological cycle runs later there. He, therefore, tends to pick late - with high alcohol levels, to be sure - but fast, with a big team of pickers.
The winemaking philosophy is for minimal intervention: gravity flow into open-top fermenters, leaving 20%-30% of the grapes in whole bunch clusters; fermentation using natural yeasts; and, after ageing in only French oak, bottling without fining or filtration.