The Bubbly Bliss of New Zealand: Top 15 Sparkling Wines

People Cheers with Sparkling Wine

The Bubbly Bliss of New Zealand: Top 15 Sparkling Wines

New Zealand, a country renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, is also a hidden gem in the world of sparkling wines. This article delves into the effervescent wonder of the best sparkling wine NZ has to offer, guiding you through an enticing journey of the best NZ sparkling wine. Whether you’re searching for the best sparkling wine NZ 2022 has presented or the best cheap sparkling wine NZ can boast of, this guide has got you covered.

The Sparkling Wine Scene in New Zealand

The Bubbly Bliss of New Zealand: Top 15 Sparkling Wines

New Zealand, a country renowned for its breathtaking landscapes, is also a hidden gem in the world of sparkling wines. This article delves into the effervescent wonder of the best sparkling wine NZ has to offer, guiding you through an enticing journey of the best NZ sparkling wine. Whether you’re searching for the best sparkling wine NZ 2022 has presented or the best cheap sparkling wine NZ can boast of, this guide has got you covered.

The Sparkling Wine Scene in New Zealand

People Cheers with Sparkling Wine

New Zealand’s wine industry, though younger than its European counterparts, has rapidly gained a reputation for quality and innovation. This holds particularly true for its sparkling wines, which have been earning accolades globally.

Unique Terroir

One of the most distinguishing features of New Zealand’s sparkling wines is the influence of its diverse terroir. The country’s breathtaking landscapes, ranging from cool-climate regions in the South Island to the warmer North Island, offer a myriad of microclimates. These varying terroirs play a significant role in shaping the flavor profiles of New Zealand’s sparkling wines.

Key Terroirs in New Zealand

MarlboroughCool, maritime climate; ideal for Sauvignon Blanc
Central OtagoCool climate with diurnal temperature variation
Hawke’s BayWarm climate, suitable for red varieties
WairarapaDiverse terroirs, Pinot Noir thrives
CanterburyCoastal influences, crisp acidity

The unique terroirs provide winemakers with a palette of flavors to work with, resulting in sparkling wines that express a sense of place and character. For example, Marlborough’s cool climate is well-suited for growing Chardonnay and Pinot Noir grapes, which are the backbone of many New Zealand sparkling wines.

Varietal Diversity

New Zealand’s wine industry embraces a wide range of grape varieties, and this diversity extends to sparkling wines. While Chardonnay and Pinot Noir are the classic varieties used in traditional sparkling wine production, New Zealand’s winemakers also experiment with local specialties, such as Pinot Gris and Sauvignon Blanc, to create unique sparkling wine blends.

Grape Varieties Used in NZ Sparkling Wines

Grape VarietyCharacteristics
ChardonnayAdds elegance, finesse, and citrus notes
Pinot NoirProvides structure, red fruit, and complexity
Pinot GrisDelicate floral aromas and stone fruit notes
Sauvignon BlancVibrant acidity, tropical fruit, and herbs

This diversity allows wine enthusiasts to explore a wide spectrum of flavors and styles within New Zealand’s sparkling wine offerings. Whether you prefer a traditional Blanc de Blancs or a more unconventional sparkling Sauvignon Blanc, New Zealand has something to offer.

Innovative Winemaking

New Zealand winemakers are known for their commitment to quality and innovation. They have mastered the art of blending traditional winemaking methods with modern techniques to create exceptional sparkling wines.

  • Traditional Methods: Some winemakers in New Zealand follow the traditional méthode champenoise, which involves a secondary fermentation in the bottle, resulting in delicate bubbles and complex flavors. This method requires patience and expertise, but the results are often outstanding;
  • Modern Techniques: Many New Zealand wineries employ cutting-edge technology and winemaking practices to ensure consistency and precision. These techniques include controlled fermentation, temperature regulation, and early picking to preserve acidity and freshness.

By combining the best of both worlds, New Zealand winemakers have been able to craft sparkling wines that are not only delicious upon release but also capable of aging gracefully, showcasing their potential for long-term cellaring.

The Top 15 Sparkling Wines from New Zealand

Two Wine Glasses with Sparkling Wine and Blurry Bottles in the Background

1. Cloudy Bay Pelorus

Cloudy Bay Pelorus is a classic choice, renowned for its elegance and balance. It sets the benchmark for New Zealand sparkling wine with its fresh, crisp acidity and vibrant fruit flavors, complemented by a delightful, persistent mousse.

  • Profile: Renowned for elegance and balance;
  • Features: Fresh, crisp acidity with vibrant fruit flavors;
  • Mousse: Delightful and persistent;
  • Price: $28-35 per bottle.

2. Quartz Reef Methode Traditionnelle

Quartz Reef Methode Traditionnelle is a shining example of Central Otago’s expertise in crafting rich and complex sparkling wines. With a creamy texture, fine bubbles, and a captivating bouquet of fruit and toasty notes.

  • Region: Central Otago;
  • Characteristics: Creamy texture, fine bubbles;
  • Bouquet: Fruit and toasty notes;
  • Price: $35-45 per bottle.

3. Hunter’s MiruMiru Reserve

A Marlborough favorite, Hunter’s MiruMiru Reserve showcases a beautiful blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier. It delights with a fine bead of bubbles, crisp acidity, and a palate bursting with citrus and red berry flavors.

  • Blend: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier;
  • Taste: Crisp acidity, citrus and red berry flavors;
  • Bubbles: Fine bead;
  • Price: $25-32 per bottle.

4. Nautilus Cuvee Brut

Celebrated for its crisp acidity and vibrant fruit flavors, Nautilus Cuvee Brut presents notes of green apple, lemon zest, and hints of brioche. It stands as a top contender for the best New Zealand sparkling wine.

  • Profile: Crisp acidity, vibrant fruit flavors;
  • Notes: Green apple, lemon zest, brioche;
  • Reputation: Top contender in New Zealand;
  • Price: $28-36 per bottle.

5. Deutz Marlborough Cuvee

Deutz Marlborough Cuvee is a delightful and affordable choice, offering exceptional value. Its fresh and fruity profile makes it an accessible and enjoyable sparkling wine from New Zealand.

  • Value: Exceptional affordability;
  • Profile: Fresh, fruity, and accessible;
  • Suitable For: A broad range of palates;
  • Price: $15-20 per bottle.

6. Lindauer Special Reserve

Lindauer Special Reserve is an affordable yet sophisticated option, perfect for those seeking quality without breaking the bank. It presents a pleasing balance of fruitiness and toasty notes, along with a persistent, fine mousse.

  • Appeal: Sophisticated yet affordable;
  • Balance: Fruitiness with toasty notes;
  • Mousse: Persistent, fine quality;
  • Price: $12-16 per bottle.

7. Akarua Brut

Akarua Brut is a well-balanced wine from Central Otago, offering a harmonious blend of fruit and yeast notes. With its fine and persistent bead of bubbles.

  • Region: Central Otago;
  • Balance: Harmonious fruit and yeast notes;
  • Bubbles: Fine and persistent;
  • Price: $25-30 per bottle.

8. Amisfield Brut

Amisfield Brut is a testament to Otago’s quality sparkling wine production. It boasts a rich and complex character with layers of stone fruits, citrus, and subtle biscuity undertones, all beautifully balanced by lively acidity.

  • Region: Otago;
  • Character: Rich, complex with layers of flavors;
  • Notes: Stone fruits, citrus, biscuity undertones;
  • Acidity: Lively;
  • Price: $30-38 per bottle.

9. Allan Scott Cecilia Brut

Allan Scott Cecilia Brut is a Marlborough star known for its consistency and excellence. This sparkling wine delivers a crisp and refreshing experience, featuring bright citrus flavors and a creamy, textural mouthfeel.

  • Region: Marlborough.
  • Consistency: Known for quality and regularity;
  • Taste: Crisp, refreshing, citrus flavors;
  • Mouthfeel: Creamy, textural;
  • Price: $22-28 per bottle.

10. No.1 Family Estate Cuvee

No.1 Family Estate Cuvee is a refined wine that represents the pinnacle of Marlborough’s sparkling wine craftsmanship. It offers a delicate balance of fruitiness and complexity, with fine bubbles and a long, elegant finish.

  • Profile: Refined, pinnacle of Marlborough craftsmanship;
  • Balance: Fruitiness with complexity;
  • Bubbles: Fine, elegant finish;
  • Price: $30-40 per bottle.

11. Te Hana Reserve Cuvee

Te Hana Reserve Cuvee is a vibrant and refreshing choice, often regarded as a hidden gem among New Zealand sparkling wines. It delights with its lively fruit flavors, floral notes, and a crisp, clean finish.

  • Appeal: Vibrant and refreshing, a hidden gem;
  • Flavors: Lively fruit with floral notes;
  • Finish: Crisp, clean;
  • Price: $18-24 per bottle.

12. Soljans Estate Sparkling Muscat

Soljans Estate Sparkling Muscat is a unique and delightful wine that showcases the versatility of New Zealand winemaking. Brimming with aromatic muscat grape characteristics, it offers a sweet and aromatic experience.

  • Unique Feature: Showcases aromatic muscat grape;
  • Profile: Sweet, aromatic experience;
  • Versatility: Demonstrates New Zealand winemaking diversity;
  • Price: $16-22 per bottle.

13. Spy Valley Echelon Methode Traditionnelle

Spy Valley Echelon Methode Traditionnelle is an elegant and complex wine, perfect for special occasions. With its creamy texture, notes of green apple, citrus, and a hint of nuttiness.

  • Profile: Elegant, complex, ideal for special occasions;
  • Texture: Creamy;
  • Notes: Green apple, citrus, nuttiness;
  • Price: $35-45 per bottle.

14. Matahiwi Estate Cuvee

Matahiwi Estate Cuvee is a wonderfully balanced wine, offering a taste of Wairarapa’s best. It combines crisp acidity with a medley of citrus and stone fruit flavors.

  • Region: Wairarapa;
  • Balance: Crisp acidity with citrus and stone fruit flavors;
  • Price: $20-26 per bottle.

15. Tohu Rewa Blanc de Blancs

Tohu Rewa Blanc de Blancs is an exquisite Blanc de Blancs that showcases the finesse of New Zealand sparkling wines. Made exclusively from Chardonnay grapes, it boasts a delicate structure, vibrant acidity, and a palate filled with citrus, green apple, and subtle mineral notes.

  • Type: Exquisite Blanc de Blancs;
  • Grapes: Made exclusively from Chardonnay;
  • Features: Delicate structure, vibrant acidity;
  • Taste: Citrus, green apple, subtle mineral notes;
  • Price: $28-35 per bottle.

Pairing NZ Sparkling Wines with Food

Seafood and wine

NZ sparkling wines are incredibly versatile when it comes to food pairings. Here are some suggestions:


The natural acidity and freshness of NZ sparkling wines make them the perfect accompaniment for a wide array of seafood dishes. Whether you’re indulging in the ocean’s finest offerings or exploring seafood from freshwater sources, the marriage of flavors with NZ sparkling wines is truly spectacular.

Recommended Seafood Pairings with NZ Sparkling Wines:

  • Succulent Lobster Tail: The succulence of lobster tail, whether butter-poached or grilled, is wonderfully enhanced by the wine’s crisp acidity and effervescence;
  • Scallop Ceviche: The zesty citrus notes of scallop ceviche harmonize with the bright, refreshing bubbles of NZ sparkling wines;
  • Seared Tuna Steak: The delicate flavors of seared tuna steak are elevated to new heights when paired with the wine’s vibrant acidity.


When it comes to cheese, NZ sparkling wines have an incredible affinity for a wide range of varieties. From the softest and creamiest to the sharpest and most pungent, there’s a cheese for every sparkling wine in New Zealand’s diverse wine regions.

Recommended Cheese Pairings with NZ Sparkling Wines:

  • Triple Cream Brie: The luxurious creaminess of triple cream brie finds its match in the effervescent character of the wine, creating a delightful contrast;
  • Stilton Blue Cheese: The bold and tangy flavors of Stilton blue cheese are tamed by the wine’s acidity, resulting in a harmonious pairing;
  • Aged Gouda: The nutty and caramelized notes of aged Gouda complement the wine’s complexity, offering a satisfying combination of flavors.

Fruit-Based Desserts

While NZ sparkling wines are renowned for their dry and crisp profiles, they can also be an enchanting addition to sweet and fruity desserts. The effervescence of the wine acts as a palate cleanser, ensuring a balanced and enjoyable finish to your meal.

Recommended Fruit-Based Dessert Pairings with NZ Sparkling Wines:

  • Mixed Berry Pavlova: The vibrant and juicy berries in pavlova are accentuated by the wine’s refreshing bubbles, creating a harmonious marriage of flavors;
  • Peach Melba: The sweet and velvety textures of peach melba find a playful companion in the wine’s effervescence;
  • Mango Sorbet: The tropical sweetness of mango sorbet is beautifully balanced by the wine’s clean, citrusy notes, offering a refreshing conclusion to your meal.

Beyond the Classics

While the classic pairings mentioned above are tried and true, NZ sparkling wines are versatile enough to accompany a wide range of dishes. Consider exploring the following culinary adventures:

  • Asian Fusion: The delicate balance of sweet, spicy, and umami flavors in Asian fusion cuisine is beautifully complemented by the wine’s acidity;
  • Poultry: Whether it’s roasted chicken, duck a l’orange, or turkey, NZ sparkling wines can add a layer of elegance to poultry dishes;
  • Brunch Delights: Start your day on a sparkling note by pairing the wine with brunch favorites like Eggs Benedict or smoked salmon on toast.


New Zealand’s sparkling wines are a treasure waiting to be discovered. From the best sparkling wine NZ 2022 has revealed to the timeless classics, there’s something for every palate and occasion. Whether you’re a connoisseur or a casual enthusiast, the best NZ sparkling wine awaits your discovery. Cheers to the bubbly brilliance of New Zealand!


Q: What makes NZ sparkling wines unique?

A: The unique terroir, varietal diversity, and innovative winemaking techniques contribute to the distinctiveness of NZ sparkling wines.

Q: Are there affordable options for NZ sparkling wines?

A: Absolutely! There are numerous options for the best cheap sparkling wine NZ produces, offering great value for money.

Q: Can I find vintage NZ sparkling wines?

A: Yes, many NZ wineries produce exceptional vintage sparkling wines, perfect for collectors and enthusiasts.

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