Take a taste on the wild side – cross the little walking bridge over the Kawarau River and stop in at the Wild Earth outdoor kitchen and cellar door.
The whitewashed stone building is at the Goldfields Mining Centre. There is seating aplenty inside and out, and do include a meal. Wild Earth owner Quintin Quider’s food from his pinot noir wine-barrel cooker is a regional culinary highlight.
American-born Quider planted Wild Earth’s first vines in 1999 in Bannockburn. He’s a keen diver, fisherman and forager who loves to use locally gathered ingredients to create sublime matches for his wines. The Barrel Food Platter for Two with wine tasting consists of five dishes matched to five wines.
Our picks Wild Earth pinots have won multiple awards, including a former top spot in Cuisine’s annual NZ pinot tasting. Try the range: the premium Earth and Sky, the Wild Earth label and Deep Cove. And don’t forget the excellent whites: three rieslings and a pinot gris.
Plus The surrounding area is an historic reserve where you can learn about the 19th-century gold rush.