MEDIA RELEASE FOR IMMEDIATE USE – OCTOBER 31 2013
Award-Winning Amisfield Wine Company Ownership Returns to Its Roots
Leading New Zealand businessman John Darby recently announced he has become the sole shareholder of multi award-winning
Amisfield Wine Company.
Mr Darby, who was previously a majority shareholder, assumed full ownership following the buyout of other shareholders.
Founded in 1988 and originally known as Lake Hayes Wines, vines were first planted on 110 hectares of vineyards in
Gibbston Valley in the early 1990s.
The Amisfield Farm, which was once a prominent high country merino station, was acquired in 1999, after it was
recognised that the Pisa area in Central Otago was the perfect wine growing sub-region.
With over 80 hectares of ten year old vines, Amisfield is one of the largest family-owned single vineyard estates in the
Central Otago region. A state-of the art onsite winery was officially opened in 2006 and has subsequently received
global merit for its architectural design.
Amisfield Wines are distributed globally and have received international acclaim since their first vintage in 2002, this
month receiving New Zealand Pinot Noir Regional Trophy “Best in Show” for the Amisfield Pinot Noir 2010 at the Decanter
Asia Wine Awards.
In 2001 the Amisfield Bistro and Cellar Door was commissioned on the shores of Lake Hayes, Queenstown. Since opening in
2005 the Amisfield Bistro has received global recognition including being a three time recipient of New Zealand’s best
winery restaurant in the prestigious Cuisine NZ Good Food Awards.
About John Darby
John Darby is one of New Zealand’s most experienced real estate investors with investment interests now spanning
During the last 25 years, his primary interest has been land use planning and property development, both as an investor
Mr Darby is the founder of Darby Partners, a specialist land investment and consulting group which has led numerous
high-profile, large-scale property developments and resort projects throughout New Zealand and the South Pacific.
These include award-winning projects such as Millbrook Resort, Queenstown; Steamer Wharf Village, Queenstown; Jack’s
Point, Queenstown; Denarau Island Resort, Fiji; Omaha Beach, Auckland; Clearwater Resort, Christchurch and numerous
Mr Darby serves as chairman of Amisfield Wine Company Ltd. He also serves as chairman and major shareholder of Treble
Cone Investments Ltd (the owner and operator of a major ski area in Wanaka); a director and shareholder of Fiordland
Lobster Company Ltd (New Zealand’s largest processor and exporter of rock lobster); a director and major shareholder of
Range Industries Ltd (the developer of a patented thermo-fusion process of converting unsorted waste plastic into
plastic shipping pallets).
John Darby is a registered landscape architect and a Fellow of the New Zealand Institute of Landscape Architects. He
received a post graduate degree from New Zealand’s Lincoln University where he specialized in land use planning.
Mr Darby is married, and has two sons and two daughters.