Family owned Coal Pit in Central Otago, New Zealand is committed to producing world class wines from the sustainably accredited vineyard and on-site winery, where only small volumes are produced annually.
THE VINEYARD & WINERY
Family owned Coal Pit covers 12 hectares of land on the warm north-facing slopes of Gibbston, the highest sub-region in Central Otago. Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc vines were first planted in 1994 on the glacially formed schist based soils, with a mix of clones for added complexity and balance. The Coal Pit vineyard typically yields intensely aromatic wines with strong minerality and is run in accordance with the proactive environmental management programme, Sustainable Winegrowing New Zealand.
Owner, Rosie Dunphy's decision to construct a 30 tonne winery in 2007 was integral in shifting the boutique vineyard's focus towards premium quality and allows ultimate control from vine to wine. Situated in the heart of the Coal Pit vineyard, the building faces north toward the Crown Range Mountains and the Kawarau River and comprises a cellar door, a temperature and humidity controlled barrel room, laboratory, meeting rooms and a loft apartment.
Coal Pit is one of the few single vineyards in Gibbston where the grapes are grown, handpicked and crafted into wines on site.
The Coal Pit name is derived from the historical area in the nearby mountain ranges which provided the early pioneers, musterers and gold miners with coal as they passed over the Coal Pit saddle. The coal was bagged at the pit, loaded into drays and brought down Coal Pit road to the valley. The flagship Pinot Noir 'Tiwha' pays tribute to the owner's late father.
New Zealand born Chris Heaphy, of Ngai Tahu Maori is a close friend of the family and the creator of the iconic Coal Pit label. Heaphy’s abstract painting hangs in the Coal Pit tasting room - the inky black lines top and bottom represent the coal seams that were once a part of the Central Otago landscape, while the dominating cadmium red represents the predominant Pinot Noir plantings in the vineyard. The effect is a striking design that complements the individuality and beauty of Coal Pit and its wine.