As you have learned, the Auckland wine region and its districts are not necessarily known for their cutting edge or experimental wines. But they are masters of the old standards.
The Kumeu River district is known for its Chardonnay, and to give due credit, Auckland actually does grow the grapes for this wine [source: Smellie]. Perhaps Auckland Chardonnay's biggest selling point is its relatively low prices. As with many other wines from New Zealand, Auckland wines are cheaper than their European counterparts despite maintaining a similar level of quality.
Waiheke Island has made a name for itself producing red wines. Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot are produced and consumed on the Island, which has quickly become a wine tourist's paradise. It is around three degrees hotter on the island than it is in the rest of the Auckland region, so the powerful flavors of the reds of the region are even more amplified than other Auckland reds.
Actually, the region as whole is known for the production of the Cabernet Sauvignon. Like on the island of Waiheke, this can be credited to the amazing heat of the region [source: Cooper]. The heat allows the grapes to become particularly flavorful, resulting in a more aggressive wine.
Auckland Wine is some of the oldest in New Zealand. The region set standards with its versions of old favorites.
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