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Wine Spectator School

Class 3: New Zealand



Discovery: Abel Tasman

In 1642, Dutch sea captain Abel Tasman landed on South Island, which was inhabited by the Maori. He didn't stay long, but he did gave his name to the island just south of Australia's mainland as well as to the Tasman Sea, the body of water between Tasmania and New Zealand's western coast.

Colonization and Captain Cook

The islands weren't colonized for another hundred years when the British arrived in force after their own sea captain charted the waters. Cook Straights, the body of water between the two islands was named for Captain Cook.

First Wines

To slake the settlers' thirst, James Busby from Scotland made the first wines in 1839.

Most of the wines produced by the fledgling wine industry were white or sparkling, but mostly...

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