Nelson is a small, little-known wine region at the northern end of New Zealand's South Island. Because it is surrounded by mountains on three sides it enjoys a unique mesoclimate that is perfect for aromatic grape varieties, such as Sauvignon Blanc. For years it was known more for its apple orchards than grape vineyards and today is only home to about 35 wineries. The vineyards surrounding Nelson enjoy a sunny climate that is moderated by cooling breezes from the Tasman Sea. Summers are warm and autumn long and dry, which makes for an extended growing season. Warm days that are followed by cooler nights allow the grapes time to reach full ripeness while still retaining acidity, which helps to build aromas in the grapes and makes the region so well suited to Sauvignon Blanc.
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