New Zealand's wine regions extend 1,100km (700 miles) from subtropical Northland down to Central Otago, home to the world’s most southerly vineyards.
Our vineyards benefit from the moderating effect of our maritime climate (no vineyard is more than 120km, or 80 miles, from the ocean), long sunshine hours and nights cooled by sea breezes.
Most of our wine regions are found on the eastern coastlines of the North and South Islands, in the rain shadow of the mountains, each with its own unique soils and climatic conditions. Within these diverse regions, subregional characteristics shine through and wines are distinguished as being not just from a wine region, but from a subregion and a place.
For anybody who has visited New Zealand, you will understand what I mean when I say that the colours there seem brighter, the personalities bigger and the energy for life so great. I finally understood this “dialled up” expression I perceived in their wines was merely a translation of life in this truly beautiful place.Julie Dupouy, Wine Writer, thetaste.ie