Waikato winery Vilagrad has plenty to celebrate as its first cider hits the shelves.

The limited edition apple cider is made from a unique combination of locally-grown pink lady apples mixed with a champagne yeast.

Winemaker Jacob Nooyen says this gives the cider a point of difference.

"The champagne yeast gives the cider its unique flavour," he says.


"Paired with apples from a local Ngāhinapōuri orchard, we've created a crisp citrus palate and a zesty dry finish — perfect for these hot days."

With over 101 awards for his wines, Jacob says he always wanted to make a local cider.

"Cider has become so popular in the past few years and to bring a locally produced cider to the market is even more special. We know our customers will love it."

A small batch made solely for Vilagrad's restaurant sold out in weeks last season — a sign that the cider is a crowd pleaser.

"We're excited to be able to share our cider with a wider group of cider-lovers," Jacob says.

"We've only made a limited amount, so don't miss out."

Vilagrad's new limited edition cider can be purchased at vilagradwines.co.nz, through the cellar door, and at participating stores Waikato wide.

Vilagrad is a family owned and operated vineyard, restaurant and function centre — now in its fifth generation of winemaking.