• Taken by Joann September 2014
  • Wine tasting looking out onto the magical vineyard vista
  • Judge Rock Panorama Feb 2014
  • IMG_0044
  • vines_judgerock1
  • vineyard_judge_rock


Elegant, sensuous, and intimate Pinot wines

2012 Judge Rock Pinot Noir

JudgeRock2012 cuisine shotNow Released for Sale.
Please contact us to purchase this beautiful Pinot Noir. Freight free for a 6 pack or case

Gold Medal 2014 Decanter World wine Awards 4.5 Stars Cuisine November 2014 silver medal International Wines & Spirits competition
Tasting notes: Aromas of bright berry, violets, plenty of spice and cocoa enveloped… into a silky seductive texture which is vibrant. A wonderful high acidity is underpinned with dark fruit and a new oak component, making this big, powerful and structured yet remarkably elegant.

Our Awards

2006 Pinot Noir – sold out

  • 5 stars – UK Decanter magazine
  • 91/100 – Neal Martin of Robert Parker
  • 5 stars & Best Buy – NZ Cuisine
  • Gold Medal  - Liquor Land Top 100


2007 Pinot Noir – sold out

  • Elite Gold medal – Air New Zealand Wine Awards


2008 Pinot Noir – sold out

  • Blue-gold medal – Sydney International Wine Competition
  • 89/100 – Lisa Perotti-Brown of Robert Parker


2009 Pinot Noir

  • Silver medal – International Wine and Spirit Challenge
  • Silver medal – Australian Boutique Wine Awards
  • 91/100 – Tom Cannavon MW


2010 Pinot Noir – sold out

  • Gold medal – UK Decanter World Wide Wine Awards
  • Elite Gold  medal – Air New Zealand Wine Awards
  • Gold medal – International Wine and Spirit Challenge
  • 5 stars – NZ Cuisine
  • 96/100 – Gourmet Wine Traveller Magazine


2011 Pinot Noir

  • Silver medal – Australian Boutique Wine Awards
  • Silver medal – International Wine and Spirit Challenge
  • 4.5 stars – Winestate Magazine


2012 Pinot Noir

  • Highly recommended –  91/100 Decanter Magazine 2014
  • Gold medal – UK Decanter World Wide Wine Awards
  • 4.5 stars November 2014 Cuisine ,
    Silver medal International Wines & Spirits competition


    2011 St Laurent

    • Silver medal – Air New Zealand Wine Awards
    • Silver medal – International Wine and Spirit Challenge
    • Silver medal – Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show



    To purchase wines contact us via email wines@judgerock.co.nz  or

    phone 03 4485059 or 0274 279108.

    ABF Wines
    Ph: +61 417088 421

    abf logo



    2011 Rosé

    Pale pink hues with raspberries and cream on the nose. A dry style Rosé with lovely strawberry and nectarine flavours, together with a creamy texture and medium weight on the palate. The wine has a good balance and a long lingering finish.


    2014 Riesling

    Pale, straw coloured with aromas of orange blossom, lime zest, stone fruit and honey on the nose. Concentrated fruit flavours of lemon and lime with some peach and guava on the palate. An off-dry style wine with a lively, balanced acidity. pure fruit expression and a long lingering finish.



    2013 Venus Pinot Noir

    Purple with purple hues.  Lifted red fruits and violets on the nose with dried herbs and savoury notes of mushrooms and leather.  Sweet red cherry and dried herbs on the palate.  This wine is well balanced and has fine, chalky tannins and a savoury character on the finish.


    2011 St Laurent

    Dark purple hues, with lifted aromas of raspberries, perfumed violets and savoury characters. Rich and concentrated on the palate with plums, mushrooms and a hint of cherry oak. A medium bodied, mouth filling wine with concentrated silky tannins.



    ˜Air New Zealand Wine Awards Silver Medal

    ˜International Wine and Spirit Challenge Silver Medal

    ˜Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show Silver Medal





    2009 Judge Rock Pinot Noir

    Sweet dark  fruit, hints of spice, mushroom and forest floor. Layers of supple tannins and fresh acidity lending elegance and persistence to the wine.



    ˜International Wine and Spirit Challenge  Silver Medal 

    ˜Awarded 91/100 by Tom Cannovan




    2011 Judge Rock Pinot Noir

    Purple hues with aromas of red fruit and spice, together with savoury mushroom. on the palate, rich, sweet, red and black cherry with spicy oak and dried herbs. A medium bodied, well structured wine with fine silky tannins and a long finish.



    ˜ Winestate 4.5 stars

    ˜ International Wine and Spirit Challenge Silver Medal

    ˜ Air New Zealand Wine Awards Bronze Medal 





    ABF Wines
    Ph: +61 417088 421


    Vineyard/ Cottage Accommodation

    photo (4)

    Judge Rock Cottage Accommodation

    1800331_10152186442972380_1067385913_nCome along and experience a home away from home in our newly renovated self contained Cottage. Enjoy vineyard accommodation at its finest. Large, spacious open plan living areas make this cottage the perfect place to relax, unwind and entertain both inside and out. Enjoy the comfort of cottage living and wake up to stunning panoramic views.  Sleeping 5, the Judge Rock Cottage is in a prime location to enjoy the Central Otago Rail Trail and other attractions in and around Central Otago. If you are looking for short term accommodation with a difference then the Judge Rock Cottage is your place to relax, with beautiful views of the vineyard right at your back door. To find out more and to book your stay do not hesitate to contact us.

    This self contained cottage has everything you need to make the most of your time in Central Otago. With the freedom to come and go as you please with private access and parking, and with the Alexandra Golf Course and Rail Trail at your doorstep, there is plenty to keep you occupied. Alexandra town centre is also only a 20 min walk away.

    Private deck and BBQ area with vineyard views, great for entertaining or relaxing. With the added bonus of being situated right on the award winning Judge Rock Pinot Wines vineyard, treat yourself to a tasting and get to know your friendly hosts over a number of their award winning vintages. Base yourself here for exploring the region

    Package tours,  courtesy of Otago Tours, can be arranged to suit. Wine Tasting,  Arts & Crafts, History of Gold mining , Lord of the Rings, Natural History are just some examples of what can be arranged.


    Click here to view the cottage


    Minimum stay 2 nights
    NZ$200 per night for 2 people plus $50 per extra person

    The Judge Rock vision is elegant sensuous intimate Pinot Noir

    Our vineyard of 4 hectares is planted with 12,000 Pinot Noir vines with the oldest vines planted in 1998.  The first planting was by John Patrick Joseph Jacobson ( Paul’s Dad) in late 1998.  The vineyard is on a westerly face slope down in the sheltered Alexandra basin in Central Otago New Zealand. We have the extremes of winter frosts -12C and summer heat 35C with cool continental climate nights.

     Our growing season starts in early October with bud burst in the first or second week and picking in early to mid April depending on the season.

    The rows of vines are angled to the north west to balance the sun light on both sides of the vines from veraison to picking. The vines are at 1.4m to 1.2m spacing with 2.5m row widths to accommodate the Massey Ferguson 35 red tractor. Vines are bud rubbed, shoot thinned, tucked up,leave removed, grape thinned and shoulder trimmed and picked, all by hand.

    This is what winemakers call hang time, leave grapes on vines to develop flavours past 24 brix. Nervous time for us vintners!


    A Year in the Vineyard

    October: Start sulphur spray regime. Every 2-3 weeks until nets go on in February. Bud burst is usually first to second week of October.
    Shoot thinning –removal of shoots to 2 per spur preferably one either side. Ensure there is an adequate gap between each spur for shoots to develop uncrowded. Ensure that area below the crown is not too crowded.
    Remove shoots at bottom of trunk
    Bud rub shoots up trunk
    Planting or replanting
    November: Continue shoot removal
    Check for blocked drippers
    Lifting of tuck wires
    Remove shoots at bottom of trunk
    December: Continue shoot removal
    Remove laterals
    Lifting of tuck wires
    Straightening and untangling of vines
    January: Lifting of tuck wires
    Straightening and untangling of vines
    Putting in clips
    Leaf plucking remove laterals so that fruit has light and air around
    Take down irrigators
    Trim vines
    February: Put on nets- tie down and secure
    Check and repair nets
    Put up irrigators
    Lifting of tuck wires
    Putting in clips
    Fruit thinning and removal of shoulders
    Checking drippers
    March: Remove second set & green/unripe fruit
    April: Harvest and party – now the winemaker’s work begins
    May: Take down irrigators
    Take off nets
    Label and put away nets
    Vineyard clean up
    Remove sleeves and stakes no longer required
    Put up irrigators
    June: Pruning- removal of cane down to 2 buds per spur. Spurs spaced length of secateurs apart Remove any spurs pointing down, or off to the side. Leave one spur down trunk below crown.
    Training- check cordon wrap is firm and rewrap or wrap new cane if required
    Younger vines 2 bud at base, choke tie or wrap . Cut off any shoots down trunk.
    Clean out sleeves of younger vines
    July and August: Pruning & training
    September: Remove sleeves and stakes no longer required
    Pruning completed
    Tidy up vineyard
    Drop tuck wires


    Steps in Pinot Noir Production

    Our grapes are hand picked late April with brix content around 25brix.

    Our Pinot Noir clones consist of
    19% 10/5
    29% Dijon
    21% Pommard
    31% 667/777.Our Pinot Noir wine making consists of the following
    90-95% destem with 5-10% whole bunches,
    100% whole berries
    one week cold soak at 10-14C in stainless steel open topped fermentor,
    8 day ferment with temperatures 25-32C,
    10-14 days post ferment on skins to extract colour and soften the tannins.
    The wine is tasted daily to get the optimal balance of tannin and fruit character.
    It is then lightly settled and raked to French oak barrels (one third new oak, one third year two, & one third years’ three and four year old barrels)
    The malolactic fermentation occurs in the barrels to soften the wine and the wine spends 10-11 months in barrel.

    The wine is settled prior to bottling. We find the Pinot Noir wine needs 18 months bottle aging to reapproach it’s condition in barrel.
    Our wines are gently crafted at Vinpro in Cromwell under the stewardship of a team of New Zealand’s most experienced oenologists.

    Contact Us