New Zealand Wine Month Kicks Off

Many Chicago eateries are going Kiwi in May by highlighting wines from NZ

You might think of sauvignon blanc when you think of wines from New Zealand. Heck, you might not know anything at all about New Zealand wines. That's about to change as more than 20 top Chicago restaurants will be taking part in "Wines to Dine For," a promotion showcasing New Zealand wines from May 1-31.

The New Zealand Winegrowers organization choose May in Chicago for this month-long event for two reasons: our city's array of excellent restaurants and the arrival of spring, also known as sauvignon blanc weather. As sauv blanc is the country's best known varietal, the group feels its an ideal entry to other wines made in New Zealand, such as chardonnay, riesling, pinot noir and merlot. Wines from some 100 New Zealand wineries, including such well-known properties at Brancott, Oyster Bay and Nobilo, will be showcased throughout the event.

Some of the "Wines to Dine For" promotion highlights include special menu pairings at such restaurants as Atwood Cafe, Ben Pao, Rhapsody, Park Grill, The Gage, Feast, Crofton on Wells and Courtright's, while eateries like Blue 13, Fiddlehead Cafe and John's Place will offer special pricing on featured wines. Noteworthy events will also take place during the month. Fox & Obel will serve complimentary samples of sauvignon blanc from Babich, Fairhall Downs, Kim Crawford and Gunn Estate on May 1, 2, 15 and 16. And on Thursday, May 21 at 7PM, Barrington Country Bistro will host a "New World Wine Dinner," offering four courses paired with New Zealand wines for $65 per person.

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