Central Otago, New Zealand
Established in 2001 and set in the heart of Central Otago’s Upper Clutha basin, Akitu’s 12-hectare vineyard sits alone at 380 metres above sea level on a stunning north facing slope. Set just minutes from Lake Wanaka the semi-continental climate, with high sunshine hours, hot summers and dry autumns help to create wines of amazing fruit purity and complexity. The vineyard is entirely dedicated to Pinot Noir, block planted in 6 sections on 250 million year old schist soils; Blocks A and B were planted in 2002 with the remainder the following year. There are approximately 41,000 vines of 6 carefully selected clones of Pinot Noir planted across the vineyard according to soil and aspect.
Founder Andrew Donaldson, a native to Central Otago, had long believed in the region’s ability to produce exceptional world class Pinot Noir and when the opportunity arose to purchase the Mount Barker site, he did so with this in mind.
Akitu produces only two wines: ‘A2’, is a generous wine full of succulent plum fruit aromatics, subtle spice and floral complexity supported by supple tannins and juicy acidity, giving impressive length, made with a percentage of whole bunch inclusion and aged in 12% new French oak.
‘A1’, made with a majority of Abel clones, is aged in 25% new French oak, and results in an elegantly crafted wine with precise fruit focus, brooding aromatics, velvety tannins balanced by lively acidity and a long refreshing finish.