Jim Robertson, global business relations manager for New Zealand wine and spirit producer Pernod Ricard, breaks down some of the country’s regional wine trends for 2007:
Gisborne (a generally sunny region on the east coast of the North Island, known for Chardonnays and Gewurztraminers): “Look for un-oaked (naked) Chardonnays to gain in popularity.”
Hawke’s Bay (a typically warm area just south of Gisborne on the North Island known for producing high quality Cabernet Sauvignons and Merlots): “Look for Pinot Gris to come out of this region; I think the New Zealand style will have more weight and flavour than the same varietal from other parts of the world.”
Basil: It’s considered an aphrodisiac, but Kates isn’t sure why.
Marlborough (New Zealand’s premiere wine growing region, located at the north end of the South Island, enjoys vast amounts of sunlight, cool nights and minimal rainfall): “Watch for the emergence of Pinot Noir, which has been overshadowed in recent years by Sauvignon Blanc.”