JamesSuckling.com | Rating: 92A luscious white with sliced apples, lemon curd and grapefruit. Medium-to full-bodied, tangy and zesty. The Mondavi magic of sauvignon from the 1980s. Drink now.Drink Dates: nowAuthor: James Suckling
California is the heartland of wine production in the US, and the state that brought prestige to American wine thanks to the pioneers who built early wineries like , , , and in the 1800s. Its large geographic area ensures a great diversity in growing sites, varieties grown, and quality levels. Generalizations about the state's wines have numerous exceptions; however, a few key facts generally hold true—ample sunshine, dry weather during the growing season, and moderate winters prevail. and continue to dominate the state's production—albeit in continually smaller percentages, as growers continue to diversify. More than 100 different varieties can be found throughout the state.
Sauvignon Blanc is a highly acidic, aromatic variety that is early-ripening and thus well suited to cool climates. Originally from , today this variety is most often associated with the in the Old World, particularly the sub-regions of and . Protective winemaking techniques are used to maintain Sauvignon Blanc’s delicate flavor profile, and wines from the Loire are praised for their elegance and restraint, expressing terroir-driven flavors of green apple, asparagus, and wet pebbles. Look to producers like for the best example of this style.
In the New World, , is the most famous region producing wines from Sauvignon Blanc. The climate is cool, but extended daylight hours and intense sunshine produce wines with more vibrant flavors than their Old-World counterparts. The best wines have aromas of gooseberry, elderflower, grapefruit, passion fruit, rosemary, and thyme. produces high quality wines in this style.
A different style of Sauvignon Blanc, often referred to as ‘Fume Blanc’, can be found in the sub-region of Bordeaux and . These wines are made with techniques similar to non-aromatic varieties, including barrel fermentation, maturation on lees, and malolactic fermentation. The result is a full-bodied, rich wine that displays complex aromas of spice and cream. Some of the best examples come from in and in .
The herbaceous notes of Sauvignon Blanc make it a great choice to pair with green herb-forward dishes containing parsley, rosemary, basil, cilantro, or mint. It also pairs well with salads and white fish. For the most classic Sauvignon Blanc pairing find yourself the local goat cheese, Crottin de Chavignol.
Collector Data For This Wine
- 47 bottles owned
- 3 collectors