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Browse the 1966 Encyclopaedia of New Zealand
Graphic: An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand 1966.


This information was published in 1966 in An Encyclopaedia of New Zealand, edited by A. H. McLintock. It has not been corrected and will not be updated.

Up-to-date information can be found elsewhere in Te Ara.



Names and Types of New Zealand Wines

The 1957 Parliamentary Committee suggested that distinctive local names should be given to New Zealand wines, though it was admitted that this could be done only gradually and with adequate publicity. At the present time few wine makers have distinctive names for their wines and the common practice is to classify them broadly as claret type and the like. In recent years there has been a steady improvement in quality and presentation. Among the fortified wines, port has declined in popularity in favour of sweet and dry sherries. There has also been a more significant increase in popularity of the high-grade white table wines, for the production of which the country appears especially well suited, as well as of carbonated and sparkling types. In 1964 a large proportion of these premium wines were red and rosé table varieties. The wider recognition of New Zealand wines has been helped by awards gained in overseas wine exhibitions and shows; in 1963 three gold and 13 silver medals were gained at the International Wine Fair at Ljubljana, Yugoslavia.

Although most New Zealand wines are made from grapes, many fruit wines are also produced. Current import restrictions have led to an increase in the production of compounded liquors which New Zealand wineries market as cups, cocktails, and liqueurs.