Nieuw Zeeland - Central Otago
When looking for a wine, you probably don't immediately think of New Zealand, but the winegrowing in this country has been around for a while. The first vines were cultivated in 1819 after they were brought to Australia by Mr. Samuel Marsden. In the sixties mostly fortified wines were grown, but in the seventies and afterwards some more fruity white wines were produced that were light in taste. However, this turned out to be only possible in the colder regions of the island. Today, New Zealand winemakers produce one of the best Sauvignon wines in the world.
Because the island is very elongated, there are quite a few climate differences in New Zealand. In the North, for example, there is a humid and almost subtropical climate and in the South, there is a continental climate. In the middle of New Zealand there is a mild maritime climate. Partly due to these climate differences, various types of wines can be produced. There are a number of important wine regions in New Zealand. Nine in total and all differ enormously in climate. This is especially noticeable in the harvesting of the grapes. For example, in the north of the country this is done in February / March and in the south harvesting only takes place from mid-April. The wines that are exported abroad after production are only quality wines. In the north we find the wine regions Auckland, Bay of Plenty, Gisborn and Hawke's Bay. The popular grape varieties Chardonnay, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are produced in Auckland. The Matakana area in particular is known for its good Cabernet Sauvignon. Marlborough is an important wine-growing region in the south of New Zealand. The grapes can grow well in this region. In this wine region especially the Sauvignon Blanc is doing well, this wine is also internationally respected. In addition, they also produce a good Chardonnay, Riesling and Pinot Noir.