New Zealand’s temperate, maritime climate and diverse regions make it an ideal location for a wide array of unique wines. From 1994 to 1998, New Zealand saw a drastic growth in the country’s wine industry following several revisions on wine laws and lifting of certain bar bans. The vineyard land grew by more than 40 percent during this period, including Marlborough, where one of New Zealand’s most popular white wines, Sauvignon Blanc, is grown.
With its pungent aroma and distinctive gooseberry, grapefruit, green pepper and passion fruit flavors, Sauvignon Blanc brought New Zealand’s winemakers into international stardom in the 1980s when it was commercially produced in the United States. Since then, all eyes have been on Sauvignon Blanc, New Zealand’s most widely planted grape wine since 2002.
Kim Crawford, one of New Zealand’s most popular brands of Sauvignon Blanc is selected from vineyards in Marlborough’s Wairau Valley and the neighboring Awatere Valley. Fast draining, alluvial loams over gravelly subsoils in these valleys provide ideal growing conditions for Sauvignon Blanc. Individual blocks are targeted for their strengths and overall contribution to the blend. The vines ranged in age, up to 14 years, bringing a mix of youthful vigor and depth of flavor to the wine.
New Zealand’s Pinot Noir is always a big international seller and favorite among many red wine drinkers. The grapes used to produce Pinot Noir are grown in cooler climates, where they get the lengthy time and space needed to develop their full perfume (bouquet).
New Zealand’s popular Pinot Noir brand, Kim Crawford, has a sweet aroma with notes of dark cherries, strawberries and spicy oak. Soft tannins and structure in this complex wine ensure that it can be approached in its youth or allowed to age and develop for several years. Deliciously seasoned, rich herb-crusted lamb and mushroom sauce is a perfect complement to Kim Crawford wine.