Booze and barbecue food is top of Kiwis' shopping lists this Labour Weekend, as the country makes the most of the last three-day break before Christmas.

Last year Countdown supermarkets sold more than 51,000 sausages over Labour Weekend, with burger patties an rissole sales jumping by nearly 14 per cent.

Soft drink and mixer sales jumped 24 per cent, and at rival supermarket chain New World, wines were already flying off the shelves as people stocked up for the long weekend.

If the sunshine decided to show up - and stick around - then sun block sales could top the 3500 sold last Labour Weekend, according to Countdown sales figures.


"Labour Weekend indicates the first of the summer months," said merchandise manager Brett Ashley.

"As the thermostat finally starts to rise, we Kiwis like to start celebrating by rolling out the barbecue and entertaining family and friends with sausages and salads, chips and dips, crackers and cheese."

A rise in meat sales last year saw a corresponding jump in all that goes with it - the deli counter made a third more salads than usual and bread roll sales increased by four per cent.

Ashley said with the colder weather almost behind us, the rain just needed to stop so Kiwis could start to embrace traditional summer fare.

"Produce unfortunately doesn't grow on command and this year the unusually high levels of rain are really challenging for growers.

"Our job is to work with them as closely as we can as we head into the warmer months to make sure we have plentiful supplies of the all important summer staples."

Meanwhile in the two weeks since the New World Wine Awards results were announced, the supermarket chains said the gold medal winning wines were flying out the door as the long weekend approached.

The top five sellers so far are Tohu Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Dashwood Pinot Gris 2017, Giesen Riesling 2015, Taylors Shiraz 2016 and Saint Clair Premium Chardonnay 2016.

Last year, nearly 400,000 bottles of the Top 50 wines, with a retail value in excess of $5.3m, sold within six weeks of the results being announced.

As the weather warmed up, many wine drinkers will turn to Rosé as a refreshing summer drop, New World chief judge Jim Harré said.

The gold medal winning Rosés expected to sell particularly well as the weather warms up were the Forrest Rosé 2017, Squealing Pig Pinot Noir Rosé 2017, Esk Valley Merlot Rosé 2017, Peter Yealands Rosé 2017 and Villa Maria Private Bin Rosé 2017.

They range in style from the bolder Forrest Rosé, which is made from Malbec grapes, through to the light and fruity Villa Maria Private Bin Rosé, Harré said.