Thursday, November 15, 2007

Marlborough Wine Country

After Kaikoura, we headed up to NZ's largest wine country, Marlborough. Unfortunately (for us), the region specializes in white wine (while we of course love BIG reds). We were prepared not to like the wine but we love wine countries and we needed to relax a bit before we started a first trek so we gave it a shot.

We spent a very nice two days there. The place we stayed was a great little relaxing spot...complete with tennis courts and bocce ball out back (all for ~$55 US!!). One of the highlights was simply drinking a bottle of wine outside in the courtyard.

The wine itself was....not exactly to our liking. That of course didn't stop us...and by us, I mean Julie of course...from enjoying ourselves as is plain from the number of tastes in this picture!

The unexpected joy (beyond the amazing value of the place we stayed) was the scenery. The area is ringed with beautiful mountains and when combined with the vineyards it was really quite nice. While this wasn't a blockbuster destination, it was indeed relaxing and quite pretty.

For you wine snobs out there, Julie wants to write about the actual wine we tasted...

So basically, Marlborough is known for its Sauvignon Blancs. Although not my favorite, I can definitely enjoy a glass of California Sauv from time to time. But in was grassy and green apple tart. We were also expecting there to be plenty of sparkling for some reason...since the area is also know for Pinot Noir and some Chardonnay. But only a few wineries seemed to have them - total bummer for us. If you feel like trying any NZ Marlborough wines, we really enjoyed Cloudy Bay. The other three we visited: Nautilus, Montana and Saint Claire were so so in our book. So of course we bought a nice bottle of Aussie Barossa wine to drink for dinner instead of sticking to the whites! :)

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