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Sauvignon Blanc

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Sauvignon Blanc

A good Sauvignon Blanc should be zesty and alive.

Sauvignon blanc is one of the most distinctive white wine grape varieties, known for its intense fresh ‘green’ aromas and invigorating high acidity.

Sauvignon blanc makes a dry, pale coloured, light to medium bodied wine. The aromas are distinctive, sometimes even piercing, yet intriguing and attractive. There is no ignoring the distinctively spiky, high notes that jump right out of the glass and follow through onto the tongue. This youthful vibrancy and overt exuberance is its beauty and it awakens the senses and enhances most foods.

The grape variety requires a cooler climate to maintain its acidity, freshness and its distinctive varietal profile. It is for this reason that Australia producers seek vineyard sites in such areas as South Australia’s Adelaide Hills and Victoria’s Yarra Valley.

Key facts about Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc’s homeland is the Loire Valley in France. The wines of Sancerre and Pouilly Fumé are the most famous. It is also grown in Bordeaux, in neighboring districts to its famous red offspring, cabernet sauvignon.

Recently, New World countries have adopted the variety to great effect, especially New Zealand, Chile, South Africa, the USA (California and Washington state), and of course Australia.

The wines show a pale, straw yellow colour. Held against a white background, distinctive green tinges are often visible.

On the nose, sauvignon blanc shows pointed and piercing aromas which carry through onto the palate. Flavours range from grass, herbs, gooseberry and the scent of tom cats, to more tropical characters such as passionfruit and kiwi fruit. Sauvignon blanc is one of those varieties that tends to taste exactly as it smells.

The main impression on the palate is the high and refreshing acidity that dances on the sides of the tongue and leaves the mouth watering – it really lets you know it’s there!

Sauvignon blanc is not usually produced with any oak treatment, however an oaked version has evolved, called fume blanc. This is most popular in California.

Whilst sauvignon blanc makes delicious, single varietal wines, it is a great mixer. It is often blended with semillon and occasionally chardonnay.

Sauvignon Blanc in Australia

In Australia, we produce a number of sauvignon blancs from our coolest vine-producing regions. Western Australia, particularly Margaret River, Victoria, particularly the Yarra Valley, and South Australia, particularly the Adelaide Hills are the best suited areas in Australia for sauvignon blanc.

The wines share a common varietal grassiness and herbaceousness, but also intense tropical fruit notes that the intensity of the Australian light helps develop.

Tasting Australian sauvignon blanc you will experience citrus, lime, passionfruit and kiwi fruit flavours. The wines are zesty and fresh, unwooded and light to medium bodied.

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