Few other wine countries have experienced such rapid industry growth in wine as in New Zealand. In 1960 New Zealand had less than 400 hectares of vines. By 2006 it had risen to more than 22,000 hectares. This is testament to the superlative quality of the wines. New Zealand was once virtually covered in rainforest which created highly fertile soil, not ideal for vine growing. But through hard work and the adoption of innovative techniques, magnificent vineyards now cover the country. Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough made the country famous, produced in a wealth of ethereal and unique styles. Pinot Noir has also excelled here, the cool climate and varied soils produce wines with a cult-like following. High quality, distinctive Chardonnay, Riesling, Gewürztraminer, Viognier, Pinot Gris, Syrah, Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot wines are all being produced.