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Mount Michael itself is the southernmost peak of the Pisa Range, standing tall as the guardian of the Kawarau gorge and the entrance to the Cromwell basin, overlooking the subregions in which our wines are grown.

Like the mountain, we have a pioneering spirit with a rich history of planting and making wines in Central Otago dating back to 1994. Present day – not much has changed, we are still exploring the region in pursuit of perfect growing conditions and flawless fruit while discovering new and evolving wine making techniques to continue to produce boutique, handcrafted Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Pinot Rose.

Distinctively Central Otago; our Mount Michael Wines are expressive of the land they come from and are treasured by all that know them.

Read more about our beginnings below..

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2019 saw a new partnership with the opening of the Mount Michael Wines tasting room in conjunction with the Buzz Stop Honey Center, located in Frankton, Queenstown.

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2018 brought new members to the Mount Michael family as we design and launch the first wines in our new collection ‘The Mountaineer’.

We also make our first vegan friendly wines.

 

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In 2016 our Reserve Pinot Noir wasn’t the only good thing gathering momentum. So was our baby niece and whilst she only had 9 and a bit months ‘in barrel’ her parents named her Isla Robbie when she came into the world in 2017.

We are thrilled to announce ISLA as our Reserve Pinot Noir for 2016, ongoing where great vintages permit. Debuting Gold in the Exhibition Category of the 2017 Air New Zealand Wine Awards.

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New friendships are formed with three generational growers sourcing their premium fruit from Lowburn, Bendigo & Gibbston; subregions of Central Otago.

The Mt Michael Lodge is opened by Alistair & Fiona Marris, the first luxury accommodation of its kind amongst Central Otago vines.

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The new generation.

As Mount Michael Wines heads into its third decade, the Robbie family acquire Mount Michael in 2015 with Peter (a fifth generation southerner of Scottish decent) and daughter Anna at the helm, the next chapter of the story begins.

 

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Alan Scott of the aforementioned investment consortium went on to buy out his other investors from the vineyard and later that year the remaining syndicate inclusive of Peter Morrison & Debbie Laycock purchased a new seven-hectare plot in Lowburn where Mount Michael Wines found its new home.

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After a decade the Anderson family sold Mount Michael Wines to a consortium of wine enthusiasts. With the success of Mount Michael Wines a premium reserve wine was created and named after an original and most loved “employee”, Bessie. A Fox terrier and rabbit hunter of legend, she was vineyard “supervisor” for many years. Mount Michael Wines retained this reserve wine until 2016 when her name was finally retired.

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The Central Otago Wine Growers Association (COWA) showcased the region for the first time in London at New Zealand House. Mount Michael Wines were apart of this maiden journey to the United Kingdom, entering in the The London International Wine Challenge and awarded a Silver Medal for the 2002 Pinot Noir at the worlds largest wine competition.

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In order to focus her initial efforts on the vineyard, Sue sold grapes from the first two years harvest to Chard Farm. By 1999, Sue felt that the vineyard was well established and the grapes had achieved sufficient quality. The first wines under the “Mount Michael” label were made by Matt Dicey of Mt Difficulty.

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The very first harvest of grapes from the Mount Michael Vineyard were picked, and blessed by the local Anglican Church Vicar. Causing some controversy as the local Catholic Church went on to being included in the founding label.

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The story begins –  Mount Michael Vineyard arose out of Sue and Martin Anderson’s desire to live and run a business in Central Otago. They spent nearly two years finding the right site; a six hectare plot overlooking the Wanaka – Queenstown turnoff at Cromwell. An initial three-hectare vineyard was planted with approximately half Chardonnay grapes and the other half in Pinot Noir grapes.

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