Giesen Pinot Gris Marlborough, New Zealand 2014

There’s no place like home, there’s no place like home, there’s no… You get the picture. IMG_20150613_124122743_HDRTwo weekends ago, my husband and I packed up the family  truckster, our dog Rooster and set out for some R&R in Raleigh, NC.

Travelling with our dog has its own challenges; he doesn’t like to be left behind in a strange place and who can blame him. So the first night we decided to eat and drink in the unit. I headed off to Fresh Market for some yummy food and of course I picked up a bottle or two of wine but I never travel without wine so we already had some at the condo. Here’s the good part, just the day before we left I received three Giesen Wines samples and here’s the really good part…they came in a cushioned travel wine “bar” complete with bottle opener, glasses and napkins.

IMG_20150613_123904194Now as any good wine drinking traveler, I IMG_20150613_123927121_HDRhave a small wine travel “bar” but had given the two bottle space to glass wine and champagne glasses, leaving me to carry my wine in a reusable wine bag. Now, I have room for three bottles and my wine glasses…yippee, I’m a happy wino.

I picked up roasted pork loin, baked potato salad, a small greens salad at Fresh Market and chose to pair with the Giesen Pinot Gris from Marlborough, New Zealand.

Aromas of peach and sweet tropical fruits I couldn’t quite place, pineapple maybe. Flavors full of white stone fruit, citrus and a hint of honey. The wine is fresh with vibrant acidity and a long dry finish. Great summer wine, especially for those of us with temps in the 90’s and no rain or relief in sight.

Region : Marlborough’s Wairau Valley, New Zealand – sourced from 8 unique vineyards
Alc: 14%
TA: 5.3 g/L
RS: 6.7 g/L
SRP – around $14


So how do three brothers from Germany end up growing wine in New Zealand? Through travels of course. The three Giesen brothers took an interest in growing grapes at an early age, starting with a hobby vineyard. Well, I had one of those, didn’t we all??? No? Hmm, odd. Anyway, back to the Giesen brothers. It was while Theo and Alex were traveling through Australia and New Zealand when they noticed a lack of varietals in wine stores. They also observed most of the wines came from the warmer North Island. Their first thought, Riesling grown in the cooler South Island.

They settled on Burnham on the outskirts of Christchurch where they purchased their first piece of land. Their brother Marcel joined them a few years later after completing his studies in winemaking. Today they have operations throughout the Marlborough region.

I have two more wines to sample so look for upcoming posts for more on Giesen Wines.

This was our first trip to Raleigh and when I made the arrangements through Airbnb in February I was looking forward to checking out a new area.

Since that time this is what I’ve learned about myself, I really love where I live and when I leave this area and go to a city, I feel a little stifled. The traffic, the noise, the crowds, the endless strip malls, it’s all just too much for me now and I generally can’t wait to get home.

Raleigh really was a nice city and I can see why people like to live there. We stayed in the Cameron Village area which was nice with lots of trees and grass and we were across from Fred Fletcher Park which Rooster loved as he got to sniff all the doggie’s butts. We walked around down town, saw the North Carolina Capital, the Governor’s residence, historic Oakwood and its cemetery. Mordecai Historic Park is also close to downtown and Oak View County Park was a short drive. Of course we hit the North Carolina State Farmers Market and brought home local veggies, cheese and other finds.

I mentioned above and in a previous post we used Airbnb for our accommodations. If you haven’t looked into this new way of finding a place to stay, I highly recommend. In a nut shell you stay in someone else’s home, apartment, room, condo, cottage, cabin, etc. Generally it’s a second home or a separate residence attached to a main home. It’s a great way to stay like a local. Plus you have amenities you may not find in a hotel, fridge, icemaker, stove, microwave, etc. I know most people don’t want to cook when they go on vacation but for use traveling with Rooster, it was great to pick up some food at Fresh Market, eat off real plates with real utensils.

If you want to know where we stayed in Raleigh or in Nashville, leave me a comment and I’ll be happy to pass the info along to you.



About Kellie Stargaard

Wine blogger
This entry was posted in Raleigh, Summer wines, Travel, White wine, Wines under $15 and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s