We are following up our look at Australian wine regions with this look at our neighbours across the pond. Why? Besides being known for its great produce, stunning landscapes and the All Blacks, New Zealand is also famous for producing some pretty fine wines too.
No wonder really, as no vineyard is more than 120 km from the ocean where cooling sea breezes make the climate perfect for a range of varietals. And for such a small country there is a lot of variety on offer, from Northland’s sub-tropical vines, all the way down to Otago, home to some of the world’s most southerly vineyards.
If you are planning on visiting, here’s where the majority of the wine in the land of the long white cloud is produced:
With its milder winters and hot dry summers, Northland is practically subtropical – at least by local standards. Here, right at the top of the north island, white wines are your best bet – Chardonnays and Pinot Gris – but reds dominate because of the warmer climate. Look to sample Merlots, Syrahs, Cabernets and Pinotages when you visit. The region is an easy hours drive from Auckland.
Hawke’s Bay, on the east of the North Island, also has a warm, temperate climate that is ideal for producing wine, and is the second largest wine region in the country. It is especially renown for its output of high-quality Cabernet, Merlot, Syrah, Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, as well as dessert wines. It is a few hours drive from Auckland.
Wairarapa & Martinborough
A relatively small wine region, but popular for its proximity to Wellington, this area’s boutique wineries are best known for their Pinot Noir, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay and Syrah. There is also no shortage of accommodation in the area – all the better to savour the local vintage when you stay.
Marlborough, right at the top of the South Island, is where most of New Zealand’s wine is produced. Here you will be able to sample world-class Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir, well as excellent Chardonnay and Riesling. What is the secret to the region’s success? The locals put it down to the combination of low rainfall, plentiful sunshine, cool nights and the areas rich alluvial soils. Nelson is the closest city, and there are also ferries from Wellington.
A little further south, the Canterbury region is a relative newcomer to wine production, but the cool, dry climate, abundant sunshine and long growing season all make for some attractive wines. Riesling and Pinot Noir dominate here and there is also some very drinkable Sauvignon Blanc on offer. Access this region via Christchurch and be sure to also check out the nearby Waipara region, which has also become known for the quality of its Riesling.
Hot, dry summers and crisp, snowy winters are just some reasons why Central Otago flourishes as a wine region. It has also been named in the top five New World wine regions, mainly for producing some of New Zealand’s very best Pinot Noir. You will also taste very respectable Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc and Riesling here. Visit it via the regional adventure playground of Queenstown for a trip of a lifetime.
Where are Edenvale grapes from?
Our harvest comes from select vineyards across South Eastern Australia, where we strive to select optimum parcels of fruit that display strong varietal definition.
Keen to taste our range of alcohol removed wines? It’s as easy as finding a local stockist, which include Coles, Woolworths and Dan Murphy’s. Or you can purchase the whole range online at shopedenvale.com.au for delivery directly to your door.