Image: Hunter’s Wines, Marlborough

Sydney Opera House, Royalty, Pink Floyd and Sauvignon Blanc

Loads of things happened in 1973. They opened the Sydney Opera House, Princess Anne married Mark Phillips, Pink Floyd released Dark Side of the Moon and the team at Montana Wines planted Pinot Noir on the outskirts of Blenheim alongside some new-fangled Sauvignon Blanc.

It may have gotten off to a shaky start, but it didn’t take long for wine producers to be wowed by this beguiling Burgundian, and while the world was being slapped in the face with the regions stunning Sauvignon Blanc, Pinot Noir was quietly bubbling away in the background.

Home to Pinot perfectionists

While still dwarfed by its flagship variety, the region’s Pinot Noir plantings now span the Wairau, Waihopai, Omaka, Brancott and Awatere Valleys, displaying dark cherry and plums with a red fruited spicy background, mid-weight, fine tannins.

Home to some pinot perfectionists, Marlborough is becoming a force to be reckoned with.

Getting there (and what to do while you’re there):

A wine-lovers dream destination, visitors to Marlborough can be sipping at the cellar doors within minutes of touching down at the Blenheim airport. Alternatively, many visitors opt to enter the region via Picton aboard the incredibly scenic Cook Strait ferry, then enjoying the stunning 30-minute drive.

Marlborough is not only about world famous Sauvignon Blanc and Pinot Noir from New Zealand’s largest winegrowing region, it’s also about fresh seafood sought by the world’s finest chefs, and diverse landscapes, from valleys of vines to sheltered waterways. Join a wine tour, hire a bike, or even set out on foot, choosing from more than 30 cellar doors, tasting award winning wines along the way, almost all within a ten-minute drive from each other.