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Apec Leaders To Taste World Class New Zealand Wine

For immediate release
27 August 1999


APEC LEADERS TO TASTE WORLD CLASS NEW ZEALAND WINE

An all Kiwi line up will give APEC Leaders the chance to try some of the world’s best wine next month.

The versatility of New Zealand’s flourishing wine industry will be a feature of official APEC Leaders’ functions, APEC New Zealand 99 Catering Coordinator David Williams said today.

World leaders will be able to taste numerous New Zealand wine varieties from most wine producing regions at the APEC 99 Leaders’ Dinner and Leaders’ Lunch.

Mr Williams and Glorious Food Wine Purchaser Jason Barnes were on a panel of chefs and APEC organisers responsible for making the final wine selection.

“We want to show our visitors New Zealand is at the vanguard of wine production and use the Leaders’ Meeting to showcase the best of the industry,” Mr Williams said.

“When creating world class menus for the Leaders we’ve never had any need to look offshore for food or wine.

“In fact we had the luxury of choosing from about 60 wines on our shortlist, all of which were up to our required standard. Obviously the final decision was based on complementing the rest of the menu, but we wanted to encompass a cross section of the varieties available in New Zealand.

“Our final choices stray a little from the obvious. For instance, many New Zealand diners opt for sauvignon blanc with the entree and chardonnay with the main course but we’ve chosen a Villa Maria riesling to go with the main at the Leaders’ Dinner.”

New Zealand’s less renowned varieties have also made their mark on APEC menues.

“We’ve selected a Martinborough Pinot Gris to serve with the Leaders’ Lunch main course, in order to demonstrate New Zealand’s ability to make superb pinot gris,” says Mr Williams.

“The Dry River Gewurztraminer, with the entree at the Leaders’ Lunch, has also received accolades from wine critics but few offshore markets associate the variety with New Zealand.”

The APEC Leaders’ Dinner will be held at the Auckland Town Hall on 12 September. The Leaders’ Lunch will be at the Wintergarden Pavillion on 13 September, during the Leaders’ Retreat.

For further enquiries contact:

Jocelyn Prasad
Communications Adviser
APEC Task Force
Phone 025 2324019
or
David Williams
Glorious Food
Phone 09 2757878

APEC NEW ZEALAND 99
THE WINE


LEADERS’ DINNER

Pre-Dinner
Domaine Chandon Marlborough Cuvee 1993


Indigenous Delicacies
Villa Maria Private Bin Riesling 1998


The Main Plate
Pegasus Bay Chardonnay 1997
Palliser Estate Pinot Noir 1998


The Illuminated Palate
Corbans Cottage Block Noble Reisling 1997


LEADERS’ LUNCH

Pre-Lunch Drinks
Pelorous Methode Champenoise 1994

First Taste
Dry River Gewurtztraminer 1998


Main Plate
Martinborough Pinot Gris 1998
Chard Farm Judge and Jury Chardonnay 1998


Dessert
Lombardi Dessert Cabernet NV


EXCERPTS FROM MICHAEL COOPER’S
1999 BUYER’S GUIDE TO NEW ZEALAND WINES


Villa Maria Private Bin Marlborough Riesling
Medium/Dry

$15

A consistently delightful wine. Lovely balance and vivacity are the key attractions of the stylish 1997 vintage (). Fragramt and full-flavoured, it’s a slightly sweet and delicate style with penetrating citrus characters underpinned by fresh, appetising acidity. It’s still very youthful, but already delicious; open 1999 onwards. The ‘98 () is ripely scented and full-bodied, in an immaculately fresh, crisp, medium style with strong lemon/lime flavours.


Palliser Estate Pinot Noir
Dry
1/2
$30

Martinborough winemaker Allan Johnson is searching for “rich Pinot Noir with the roas coffee aromas of ripe fruit and good structure:. The wine has generally been overshadowed by thow of Ata Rangi, Martinborough Vineyard and Dry River, but the ‘96 () is the finest yet (“by a long way” says Johnson). It’s a strapping (14.5 percent alcohol) and voluptuous red with a lovely surge of ripe, intense, almost sweet-tasting fruit flavours, fleshed out with a toasted oak, and a velvet-smooth finish. It’s already highly enjoyable, but has the power and structure to flourish in the cellar for several years.


Dry River Estate Gewurztraminer
M/Dry

$25

This, stylish, exceptionally full-flavoured yet wonderfully delicate Martinborough Gewurztraminer is the country’s finest. In its youth, it typically displays lifted orange peel fruit aromas, with a tight, well-spiced palate, rich in alcohol. The 1996 vintage () is a lovely marriage of power and finesse, with mouthfilling body, very refined citrus/spice flavours and a lingering, very rich finish. The pale yellow ‘97 (1/2) is from an ultra low-cropping year (2 tonnes/hectare) in which the fruit was harvested at 25 degrees brix. The bouquet is gently spicy; the palate stil very youthful but classy, with very delicate and refined, slightly sweet flavours of ripe citrus fruits, spice and lychees. It’s more restrained than the ‘96, but on past performance should richly repay cellaring to at least 2000.


Martinborough Vineyard Pinot Gris
Medium/Dry

$25

For his first 1996 vintage (), winemaker Larry McKenna simed for “a Burgundian style with complexity, texture and weight” - and hit the target with ease. (Small pockets of Pinot Gris can be found in Burgundy.) Oak-aged for 10 months, the ‘97 () is a monster of a wine (14.5 per cent alcohol). Pale gold, with a buttery, nutty fragrance, it’s fat and soft, with intense, ripe, peachy, succulent flavours, already very expressive.


Lombardi Dessert Cabernet
Sweet
1/2
$9 (375ml)
In the past this Hawke’s Bay winery specialised in fortified wines, sot it’s no surprise this is a decent drop. Matured in oak barrels, it is densely coloured, with impressively intense blackcurrant-like flavours and a sweet, firm, tannic finish.


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