- Discovering the Joys of New Zealand Wine

Auckland Wine Region

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Auckland is the population center of New Zealand with roughly a third of the total human inhabitants. (Sheep are another story. They outnumber the humans 15 to 1 but only a few of them live in Auckland.). Auckland is bustling and cosmopolitan, located on an isthmus between Manukau Harbor, Waitemata Harbour, and the Hauraki Gulf. With water everywhere, yachting is a leading leisure activity and the reason for the nickname "City of Sails."

Many of the top brands in New Zealand's commercial wine industry started in the post-prohibition era with Croatian immigrants, mainly in the west Auckland areas of Henderson and Kemeu. These include Babich, Delegat's, Seleks, Nobilo, Kumeu River, Lincoln, Pacific, Pleasant Valley Soljens and Villa Maria. The vineyards of the Auckland region are a small percentage of the total, as the large producers acquired properties in the other regions more suitable to high volume production such as Gisborne, Hawke's Bay and Marlborough.

The Auckland area, with its location in the lower latitudes, is warm and sunny. With water all around, the climate is moderate but the higher rainfall can be a drawback. While the producers source most of their grapes from other areas, a handful of smaller wineries are reinvigorating the market with quality wines from locally grown fruit; Kumeu River and Matua Valley being the top names. Nearly all varietals, red and white, are attempted.

Here is the list of wineries:


Auckland & South Auckland