New Zealand Wine

The history of New Zealand wine-making dates back to the 1800s when settlers planted vines and some commercial wineries began to surface. But the industry never really took off as it did in Australia and other parts of the world at this time. When Phylloxera struck the country, as it did elsewhere, the known “cure” was to graft American root stock onto European vinifera, which repelled the louse. However, New Zealand took a more direct approach and decided instead to just source all their vines directly from America. which was costly and time-consuming. There were also very loose quality standards when it came to wine production. Sugar and water were allowed to be added to bulk out the wine. As a result, into the 20th century, most New Zealand wine was shunned in favor of Australian imports. 

There was also a form of Prohibition enacted around the same time as it was in the US, in the 1920s. While alcohol was not banned outright, there were several government measures put forth to Read more »

Mentor for New Zealand Wines

Wai Xin Chan

A wine drinker turned CSW! Author of WineXin.SG. Good wines, cheap wines. What more can I ask for?

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Popular wines made in New Zealand under $20

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Varietals Produced in New Zealand View all

  • Merlot

    The Occitanian word “merlot” translates to “young blackbird.” An accurate description for this popular, early-budding...

  • Sauvignon Blanc

    Sauvignon Blanc is widely grown in California -- at over 15,000 acres, it’s now the third most planted variety -- and...

  • Chardonnay

    British wine writer and critic, Jancis Robinson, once noted that throughout the 80’s and 90’s in the United States, C...

  • Pinot Noir

    “With so voluptuous a perfume, so sweet an edge, they make the blood run hot,” Joel Fleischman, wine columnist at Van...

Subregions of New Zealand

  • Central Otago

      Cental Otago, located on the tip of New Zealand’s South Island is the world’s highest and ...

  • Gisborne

    Gisborne Wine Region http://www.gisbornewine.co.nz Wine lovers revere Gisborne as the “Chardo...

  • Hawke's Bay

    Hawke’s Bay, in New Zealand’s North Island, has the longest wine-making history in the country....

  • Marlborough

      While wines from Marlborough, in New Zealand’s South Island, have only come into prominenc...

  • Auckland

  • Nelson

      Nelson is a small, but prolific wine region located at the northern tip of New Zealand’s S...

Popular Wineries in New Zealand View all

  • Oyster Bay Wines

    Internationally-recognised for producing "elegant, assertive wines with glorious fruit flavours",...

  • Mount Cass

    Mount Cass is a family owned boutique vineyard producing outstanding handcrafted wines in the hea...

  • Dog Point Vineyards

    Dog Point Vineyard combines the considerable wine-growing experience of Ivan and Margaret Sutherl...

  • Selaks Wines

    When Marino Selak first arrived in New Zealand from his native Croatia in 1906, there were a f...

  • Kemblefield Estate Winery

    In the early 1990’s Californians John Kemble and Kaar Field began their search for a vineyard and...

  • Highfield Estate

    Highfield is a boutique Marlborough winery making ultra premium, food friendly wines for restaura...

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New Zealand on Snooth

  • Nice Zinfandel EM.  I haven't tried that one yet.We drove over to ... ... ... Blanc from Marlborough New Zealand, and a Sancerre from the Loire Valley in France) with the crab and a prosecco with the oysters.  I think Sandra had a Sauvignon Blanc but I'm not sure now.   The meal was quite tasty and they even threw in a free espresso after I h... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • BTW, any comments on these: the wines, the vintages and the indicated prices? Australia/New Zealand CollectionJamsheed, Syrah, Helasville "Hill Paddock Vineyard" 2010  $45/5,000 JPYPenfolds GSM Bin 138-Old Vines, Barossa Valley $440/4,500 JPYVasse Felix, Shiraz, Margaret River, 2000 $30/3,100 JPYTin Shed, Shiraz, Barossa Valley "Single Wire Vine... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Aussie Wine in the US


  • Enjoying this Austrian Gruner that the CFOs father brought us on his last trip ... with his grandson, next stop New Zealand.  Not bad for an 88 year old. Hope to be doing the same when we get to be his age - go Tom g Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • DM - We are familiar with the Pinot Noir in Burgundy, as we visited that area ... we tried any Pinot Noir from New Zealand though.The ride to Sturgis would take me a few weeks just to get there, due to my bumm wrist (right hand) as I could only do about 200 miles a day with my endurance.  I once did about 350 miles in one day and it left me pr... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Nobilo Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2016

    Snoothrank:

    Delightful peach and ripe green apple aromas with jalapeño and fresh herbs on the nose. This is tart, zesty and refreshing with a bowlful of acidity, juicy lime, grapefruit and golden berry and a wooded, herbal barky note towards the finish that ends on lime zest and pineapple. Read More

    Wine review by Snooth Editorial


  • Clifford Bay Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough 2015

    Snoothrank:

    Loads of grapefruit and lemongrass with petrol, melon, minerality and acidity give a fruity, juicy finish. Satisfying - drink now - 86 points - Paul Read More

    Wine review by rckr1951


  • ALL PROPERLY CELLARED California CollectionSpottswoode CS, Napa 2006  ... ... JPY Australia/New Zealand CollectionJamsheed, Syrah, Helasville "Hill Paddock Vineyard" 2010  $45/5,000 JPYPenfolds GSM Bin 138-Old Vines, Barossa Valley $440/4,500 JPYVasse Felix, Shiraz, Margaret River, 2000 $30/3,100 JPYTin Shed, Shiraz, Barossa Valley "Single Wir... Read More

    Forum post in the topic Wine Collection for Sale @...


  • Villa Maria Private Bin East Coast Chardonnay

    Snoothrank:

    This wine displays a complex array of aromas and flavours. White peach, nectarine, grilled nut and oatmeal notes on the nose, followed by delicate butterscotch characters on the palate with integrated fine oak and lovely linear acidity. A medium bodied wine, it is finely balanced and elegantly textured, finishing with subtle flint nuances and a ... Read More

    Wine review by wjudeacosta


  • Al, you should also explore PN from Sonoma, New Zealand, and of course Burgundy. A few other places are interesting but those are a big start.Ever considered riding up to Sturgis? Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekday Wines - Post Pictures...


  • Hi Really Big Al, thanks for the welcome. I never...ever...ever overcook ... ... $20.00 wine for sure. Great New Zealand zinger :-) Cheers&nbs Read More

    Forum post in the topic Weekend Wines - Post Pictures...


  • anyone tried Dry River, Pinot Noir, yet?

    Comment by 366188dalizard 366188 dalizard


  • Have you tried Torlesse Wines? The Pinot Noir is quite nice. Very good quality wine for the $'s.

    Comment by 75641mundi 75641 mundi


  • I'm looking for Monkey Bay NZ wines

    Comment by 317710Blackburn Creek 317710 Blackburn Creek


  • Was at your wine tasting tour in NYC this weekend. Tasting at USQ wines was much better setup than other 2. Definitely learned the most about NZ wines there and only bought wine there.

    Comment by 103907kells277 103907 kells277


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