Established in 1992, Mt Difficulty Wines is home to some of Central Otago’s oldest and most revered vineyards. Situated along Felton Road in the famous sub-region of Bannockburn, Central Otago, this unique area of extremes is ideally suited to crafting wines that speak with a sense of place. “Our philosophy combines ethical viticulture with minimal intervention allowing the wine to express its personality and reflect its home.” Mt Difficulty Estate is comprised of six vineyards; Templars Hill, Pipeclay Terrace, Menzies Terrace, Mansons Farm, Target Gully and Long Gully – total plantings of 40 hectares protected by the rain shadow of Mt Difficulty. The region provides New Zealand’s only “continental” style climate. The vine age gives the wines, particularly the Pinot Noirs, extra complexity and concentration. Mount Difficulty is integral in providing low rainfall and humidity for the region. Bannockburn enjoys hot summers, a large diurnal temperature variation and long cool autumns; conditions which bring the best out of the Pinot Noir grapes. These conditions, along with soils which are ideal for viticulture, provide an excellent basis not only for Pinot Noir, but also for Pinot Gris, Riesling, and Chardonnay.
Region: Bannockburn, Central Otago
Year Founded: 1992
Proprietors: Matt Dicey
Winemaker: Matt Dicey
Size of property: 40 hectares
Amount of Property Planted: 40 hectares
Terroir: One feature common to all our vineyard soils is the high pH levels: sweet soils are tailor-made for the production of quality wines. They are all low in fertility, and include light sands, clays, loams and gravels. Germanic man-made soils, which came about as a result of hydraulic mining and sluicing in the gold mining era of the late 1800's, can also be found on some blocks. The so-called Bannockburn soil is one of the few soils in the world classified as man-made.
Varieties Cultivated: Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, Riesling, Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Gris.
Organic/Sustainable/Other Certifications: Mt Difficulty Wines Ltd is an accredited member of the Sustainable Winegrowing initiative (SWNZ) & was designed as a low energy input winery. The semi-extensive green roof is actually also a warm roof, having R4 insulation underneath. The green roof also helps to reduce storm water runoff and is a disposal area for winery wastewater treatment plant.
Cellar Door: The Cellar Door at Mt Difficulty is open seven days a week from 10.30am-4.30pm with summer hours operating from Christmas to Easter: 10.30-5.30pm