Tuesday, November 29, 2011
posted by: Irv

After our great wine experiences in Blenheim, we thought we’d relax a bit with some beach time in Nelson. However, the gale-force winds made any outdoor activities somewhat less than appealing. So, we just had to substitute cellar doors for surf and sand.

On Kevin Judd’s suggestion, we made our way to Neudorf in the Moutere Hills region half an hour west of Nelson. This is a family-owned and operated vineyard which grows all its own fruit. The highlight here was their pinot noir rose, which had great ripe fruit balanced with just the right amount of acidity. If we ever have a warm afternoon any time soon, we will certainly enjoy the bottle we purchased. Neudorf also produces some tasty pinot gris, chardonnay and pinot noir.

On the way back to Nelson, we stopped at Seifried, the area’s largest producer. The owners are of Austrian heritage and their plantings reflect this background. Their repertoire includes a gruner veldtliner, a Zeigelt, and a wurzer. The latter is an unusual varietal, being a cross between gewurztraminer and muller thurgau. All of their wines were well-made and very enjoyable, but our favourites were their chardonnay and their cabernet merlot, a bottle of which just happened to make its way into the boot of our car. We had a very tasty lunch there, finishing off with a sample of their late harvest riesling, Sweet Agnes. Seifried does have an Alberta agent based in Calgary, so I will have to do some followup and find out which labels are shipped to Canada.

We tried to finish off our day with a nostalgic visit to Ruby Bay Winery, which we had visited on our first trip here in 1993. Alas, this winery no longer exists in the same location, so we had to settle for a walk along Ruby Bay Beach.

Our day ended over a delectable red snapper dinner at the Boat Shed, overlooking Tasman Bay, with a bottle of Greywacke Sauvignon Blanc to mark the occasion.

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