Matua Valley, a pioneer in planting sauvignon blanc in New Zealand's Marlborough region, has been producing distinctive wines for four decades. Located 50 miles west of Auckland, the winery sits on a ridge overlooking the lush Waikoukou Valley, where the region's sunny, dry climate and ocean breezes ensure a long ripening season. In addition to Matua's acclaimed sauvignon blanc, its pinot noir has won numerous awards in international competitions. In the glass, the pinot noir offers bouquets of strawberries, red and dark cherries, hints of sweet spice and herbal aromas. On the palate, it exhibits vibrant berry fruits such as cranberry and raspberry, savory thyme notes, an earthy undertone and smooth tannins. Drink it with grilled meaty fish such as salmon, tuna nicoise, barbecued pork ribs, sausages, roasted vegetables, mushroom risotto and cochon de lait.
Buy it at: Whole Foods Market in Uptown and Fresh Market in Mandeville. Drink it at: Cochon.— BRENDA MAITLAND