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Tucked away amidst the rolling farmland of the Waikato and Bay of Plenty are a few small but reputed vineyards.
Just south of Auckland, drop into Vilagrad in Ohaupo. Established in 1922, this family run winery offers great wines and hospitality in its rural setting. Located on the banks of the Waikato River in the outskirts of Hamilton, Mystery Creek is another delightful winery in the region.
Typically grape varieties grown in the Waikato region include chardonnay, merlot and gewurztraminer. Generally wineries supplement with grapes produced on other vineyards to cover all major styles of wines. A dairy heartland, Waikato is also renowned for its cheese – the perfect accompaniment to your chosen wine.
Further east, in the Bay of Plenty region, wine production is mainly focused on Chardonnay, followed by Cabernet Sauvignon and Sauvignon Blanc. Among the notable wineries here is the multi award-winning Mills Reef Winery. Its distinctive art-deco style building boasts full winemaking and bottling facilities, a five hundred barrel cellar, an aged wine cellar and spacious wine tasting areas.