The popularity of New Zealand’s wines is quite staggering, especially when you consider just how little they make. The country is responsible for less than half a percent of the total global production. We see a significant number of these tasty bottles over here as the UK is New Zealand’s most important export market. The high quality of the wine coupled with a certain accessibility in the glass has been delighting wine enthusiasts for years.

Marlborough at the north end of South Island is Sauvignon central and is home to cult favourite Cloudy Bay. You’ll find Bordeaux blends (Cabernet Sauvignon with Merlot) in Hawkes Bay, and Otago is home to arguably the best Pinot Noir outside of Burgundy.

The whites are very good with seafood, especially in a tempura batter. I’d have lamb with the Cabernet Merlot, and duck with the Pinot.

Here are a few to whet your appetite this weekend.

Peter Yealands Reserve Sauvignon Blanc (Waitrose, £11.59). This is fresh and crisp, with lovely tropical fruit notes on the palate. Try a perfectly chilled glass with a large plate of mussels. It’s great value at £11.59, and in fact at the time of writing, it was £3 off at £8.59. If you can still pick it up for less than a tenner, don’t just buy one.

Mt Difficulty Bannockburn Pinot Noir 2016 (Waitrose, £25.99). There’s a lovely earthy note to this wine that adds complexity and depth. I’ve mentioned the Mt Difficulty before in this column, but you’d be hard pressed to find a better example of the style. It’s expensive, but worth every penny.

Villa Maria Private Bin Merlot 2017 (Waitrose, £11.99). The grapes come from the Gimblett Gravels vineyards, one of the best areas for Merlot in the world. After a decant, this is the one to have with lamb. Cheers!