. This place is owned by Peter Yealand, a pioneer in the mussel cultivation industry, cum lately the maker of wine. He has employed a terraced approach to vineyards and has engaged in environmentally advanced techniques to ensure sustainability. The state of the art building which includes the tasting room, has solar panels on top. Throughout the vineyard, he has wind turbines. All of the glass for the wine bottles and paper for the boxes is recycled. His goal is to be completely energy neutral. What this shows is that cap and trade is unneccessary to achieve the results of energy savings. Let's let free enterprise choose the method of energy consumption. As importantly his wines, especially the SB, Viongier and Pinot/ Merlot are quite good
Today I did a hike to a seal colony. Unfortunately, with the exception of two seals, none were spotted, although some senior ladies fresh of the walk had assured me they were there in plentiful numbers. Came back into town and had lunch at a very good cafe, directly accross the street from where I am staying, the Lobster Inn. Despite the funky name, this place is adequate with a nice pool which will be used after this blog.I am having an excellent coffee at the coffee cart, operated by an ex-pat canadian with free wifi. An excellent Cappy indeed. Later i will trade in some of the books I have read at a used bookstore
. The area is replete with history, having been a major whaling station first inhabited by a man named fyfe. The original house is a museum and there are markers for whaling and presumably sealing throughout the area. Last night i met a couple Wisconsin cheeseheads, haters of Bret Favre and riders of Harleys. They were enjoying their ride on their rented bikes and we were joined by A man of Maori heritage, who dispelled many myth about his culture and let me sample a taste of Sea Urchin roe, from a sea urchin pictured herein. I was at first hesitant, thinking that Tony Boudain had said that improperly prepared sea urchin was lethal, but felt relieved when I remembered that was blow fish. The roe was kinda yucky, but did have a taste similar to oyster, just not the texture. He then downed the remainder in one big slurp, followed by the biggest shot of Irsh Wiskey, supplied by my motorcyle friends. This while I enjoyed the conversation while sipping a pinot noir I had scored at Clos Henri in Marlborough. A fitting end to another great day in Aotearoa (the land of the long whte cloud).
Yesterday I took the relatively short trip from Blenheim in Marlbourogh to Kaikoura, which in Maori means to eat cray fish. The city involves a maori legend dating back almost 400 years where a king in search of one of his three wives came here and found the bounty of the sea. We would call cray fish a spiny lobster and based on the cost, it is very dear (expensive). Anyway he continued on and found the wife had been turned to greenstone (jade). The current focus on this place besides seafood is the sea itself. Activities include kayaking, tours for the sperm whale (moby dick) by air and sea, dolphin and seal swimming tours biking, hiking and picture taking. The first half of the drive here was quite unremarkable. A stop was made in Seddon, part of the end of the Marlborough sounds and near the Awatere River. This is the focus of much wine growing, principally the Savvie (SB) grape for the multitude of wineries in Blenheim/Renwick visited over several days. Here you will find Yealands Winery (pronounced Yeelands)