Grape Expectations: Sauvignon Blanc

23rd June 2014

Phillip delves into the two distinct styles of the Sauvignon Blanc grape for Waitrose Weekend.

The first is from the Loire Valley in France, the other from the Marlborough region of New Zealand. The former produces wine with minerally notes of flint and gravel, gooseberry and a smoky whiff, whereas the latter makes for tropical fruit and grassy flavours.

In France, there are three appellations producing sauvignon blanc: sancerre, pouilly-fumé and the more affordable sauvignon de touraine. But it’s the new kids on the block in New Zealand who have tapped into this grape’s true potential, gaining a reputation for reliable, unashamedly happy wines, light in style and on the bank balance.

I’ve had more fun evenings with mates drinking a New Zealand sauvignon blanc than any other wine. It’s great with chicken and most seafood – particularly fish and chips!

Waitrose recommends:

Ara Single Vineyard Sauvignon Blanc 2013 Marlborough, New Zealand (bin 441816; £10.99);

Cowrie Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2012 Marlborough, New Zealand (bin 694875; £7.49);

Astrolabe Awatere Sauvignon Blanc 2012 Marlborough, New Zealand (bin 365117; £16.99).

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