PROBABLY surprising no one who has ever visited Central Otago winery Rippon, a family-owned biodynamic vineyard on the shores of Lake Wanaka, was named the eighth best vineyard in the world and the best in Australasia in the World’s Best Vineyard Awards. Some 1500 wineries were nominated by an academy of international wine experts, with Rippon not the only NZ winery to feature. Hawke’s Bay’s Craggy Range nabbed 11th place, the only other NZ winery to make the Top 50. Reputably one of the world’s most photographed vineyards, Rippon was singled out for its “jaw-droppingly beautiful views from the shore of Lake Wanaka” and “stunningly sleek biodynamic wines”, while Craggy Range attracted attention for its luxury accommodation, award-winning restaurant and “multi-region single-vineyard wines”. Awards founder Andrew Reed said the gongs are designed to acknowledge vineyards that offer “a total package, as wine is a reflection of its individual surrounds, its terroir”. Argentina’s Zuccardi Valle de Uco took out first place, with Bodega Garzon in Uruguay second, and Spain’s R Lopez de Heredia Vina Tondonia coming in third.