Post by John Farrell on Jan 9, 2007 13:32:25 GMT -5
Hi, Ron. New Zealand has a varied landscape - the South Island has a spine of mountains, some over 10,000 ft. In the southwest is fiord country, similar to Norway. To the east of the mountains are extensive plains. The North Island has a high plateau in the centre, which is the closest we have to desert. Projecting from this are 3 volcanoes, one active. There are large areas of rolling hills, as you suggest.
New Zealand has a varied landscape - the South Island has a spine of mountains, some over 10,000 ft. In the southwest is fiord country, similar to Norway. To the east of the mountains are extensive plains. The North Island has a high plateau in the centre, which is the closest we have to desert. Projecting from this are 3 volcanoes, one active. There are large areas of rolling hills, as you suggest.
That's quite a lot to pack into a fairly small country.
But then I suppose the UK's got pretty varied scenery too: the tightly cultivated areas of Kent (the garden of England), the rolling hills of the South Downs, the wide plains of the west country, the valleys and hills of Wales, the large flat Fenlands in East Anglia, the spine of the Pennines coming down through the North Country, the mountains, glens and lochs of Scotland, The rugged and sometimes unhospitable coast of the north of Sctland and the Isles. I suppose we've got it almost all - lucky old us! No volcanos, though. .
BTW, there's an area of marshland south-east of where I live known as Romney Marsh. Famous for its olden-day smugglers. One April the First, a local wag appeared on a chat show on local radio as The chairman of the Romney Marsh Mountain Rescue Club, and appealed for experienced climbers, funds for climbing equipment and a helicopter.
Ah, Peter, but New Zealand is warm enough to grow Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc grapes! The land area of New Zealand is larger than that of the United Kingdom.
Oh, we can grow wine grapes along the south coast, and even in Kent. I don't know the varieties, but some of the wines produced fairly locally, about 30 miles me, are quite palatable dinner wines. Not up to the top French wines, but considerably better than most Vin Ordinaire, more on a par with a Vin de Pay. I prefer a fruity dry red wine, but sometimes like a dry Hock with fish. Goes well with plaice or Dover sole. I understand Pinot Noir grapes don't like the climate too hot.
I've tried several Australian wines from grapes which originated in France, which I quite like, though I wish the Aussies would choose names which sound more attractive to European ears. Somehow names like Jacob's Creek don't sound quite right on a bottle of wine.
But that's the Aussies for you. "Down to earth here, Mate. You can shove your fancy foreign sounding names down the dunney!"
Tried making my own wine some years ago. The wine from imported grape concentrate wasn't up to much, but I got some very nice traditional elderflower and rosehip wines. Just right for a summer picnic with cold meats. Gave it up after a time, though. Got fed up with tripping over demi-johns bubbling away all over the place, and with the time it took to pick the fruit, make the wine, filter and bottle the stuff. Brewed some quite nice ale at one time, too. Kent hops, of course!
Haven't seen any New Zealand wines in my local shops. If I do I must try one. I'd probably prefer the Pinot Noir. I'm told there's also some nice Chardonnay coming here from NZ, too.
Post by John Farrell on Jan 9, 2007 19:45:40 GMT -5
Unfortunately, good Pinot Noirs from here are rather expensive - we usually aim to spend NZ$10 on a bottle (around 3 pounds) - but they go for twice that and up. We usually drink New Zealand white wines, and Australian reds - the Aussies make lovely ripe reds, but their whites lack character. Their climate is too warm.
Winegrowing in New Zealand started in West Auckland, not far from where I live. The original vineyards were planted by what were called "Dallies" - settlers from Dalmatia, now part of Croatia, 100 or so years ago. They made wine for their own use. It took until the 1960s for other New Zealanders to develop a taste for wine, and there has been a rush of vine plantings since then. Most plantings are classical French varieties.
New vinyards are mainly being planted on the east coast of the North Island, and in the South Island.
Post by John Farrell on Jan 10, 2007 18:54:09 GMT -5
The orcs and trolls were all down the other end of the island, John. The films made in Helensville tend to be ones which need a small town setting. I don't think the town could have stood in for Bree.....
is called Helensville. It is on the Kaipara River, 50 kilometres northwest of Auckland.
Would it be nice to send here a picture or two of the town or whatever where you are living? How you are storing or preserving your collection or anything you consider to have some interest among the others?
My place is in the western coast of Finland.
Pictures are taken with Canon PowerShot s45 and Olympus E-500, 50-150mm kit lens.
This is a Downtown Scene and too broad to match the rules: