Marlborough: New Zealand's Flagship Wine Region

If you mention New Zealand wine in conversation, most people will assume you mean sauvignon blanc, and with good reason.  New Zealand sauvignon blancs are considered to be the world's best by many wine experts.  And, if you are looking for the best of New Zealand's sauvignon blancs, you will inevitably end up in Marlborough.

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Located on the northern end of New Zealand's South Island, Marlborough was sheep-grazing country until 1973, when the first vineyards were planted in the area.  In less than two decades, Marlborough transformed itself into New Zealand's premier wine region, thanks to the distinctive flavors and high quality of its sauvignon blanc wines.

Today, over 85 percent of New Zealand's sauvignon blanc grapes are grown in Marlborough, and Marlborough wine growers account for more than half of the country's wine grapes, according to New Zealand Winegrowers Vineyard Surveys.  There is a very simple explanation for this astounding growth – Marlborough's climate and terroirs are perfect for growing cool-season wine grapes, particularly sauvignon blanc.

Geography, Climate and Soils

For more than 25 years, The California Wine Club founders Bruce and Pam Boring have explored all corners of California’s wine country to find award-winning, handcrafted wine to share with the world. Each month, the club features a different small family winery and hand selects two of their best wines for members.

Marlborough encompasses the northeastern tip of New Zealand's South Island.  Much of Marlborough's coastline lies along the Cook Strait, which separates North and South Islands.  This coastline includes Cloudy Bay, which lends its name to one of Marlborough's best-known wineries, and Clifford Bay, a little farther to the south.