Why you should drink New Zealand wine

If you’re a wine drinker, you may have noticed that a lot of wine comes out of New Zealand, especially sauvignon blanc, the country’s most famed grape.

What you might not know, however, is that Minnesota now boasts a local connection to the kiwi wine scene: Nigel Avery of Sileni Estates — a certified sustainable winery in the famous wine-producing region of Hawke’s Bay, New Zealand — has moved to Edina to help grow his family’s wine business in the U.S.

And he’s quite an interesting guy, too: Prior to joining the ranks at Sileni, Avery was a professional athlete, skilled in track-and-field, bobsleighing and weightlifting. He even participated in the 2000 Summer Olympic Games in Sydney, Australia.

These days Nigel's focus is on his family, including his wife, Shelley, and their three daughters. 

Sileni wines are available in wide variety of whites and reds for $12 to $15 a bottle at Haskell’s, Edina Liquor and MGM stores, as well as select Parasole Restaurant Holdings locations such as Manny’s Steakhouse in Minneapolis and Salut Bar Americain in Edina.


Sileni’s latest new introduction to the U.S. market is a single-serve plastic mini bottle that comes with its own cup for easy on-the-go wine. Nano prices range from $3.99 to $4.99. Learn more at sileni.co.nz.