There are many great wine-growing regions of New Zealand, as its two big islands stretch from the nearby chill of Antarctica to the nearby inferno of the tropics.But two of the best are Marlborough on the South Island and Hawkes Bay on the North Island. Both produce classic whites and reds, although Marlborough is known more for the former and Hawkes Bay more for the latter. Hawkes Bay also has a great sub-region for reds — the aptly name Gimblett Graves with its river-bed stones — and we have a couple of them here.
As this is New Zealand, which loves its screw-cap bottles, you seldom will have to break out a corkscrew.
Kim Crawford Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2014 ($14)
Very aromatic, but also very savory and herbal. Complex green fruits with lots of stuffing.
Trinity Hill Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2014 ($16)
Cloudy Bay Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2015 ($29)
Green and creamy — lime and gooseberries — and long on the palate.
Trinity Hill Hawkes Bay Pinot Noir 2013 ($16)
Bright, lush fruit with some grapey flavors and a good finish. Interesting, but not your typical pinot varietal.
Kim Crawford South Island New Zealand Pinot Noir 2014 ($20)
Trinty Hill Gimblett Gravels “The Gimblett” 2013 ($26)
Trinty Hill Gimblett Gravels Syrah 2013 ($27)
A lot like an upper Rhone syrah, with pungent, earthy, tangy, red-fruity aromas, and flavors — quite nice.