edited by Sue Courtney
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Wine Reviews - Sauvignon Blanc
by Sue Courtney
Last updated 19 Aug 2010
Although some of these tasting notes may be found elsewhere on this site, this page brings together most of my 2007 vintage Sauvignon Blanc notes, listed alphabetically by producer. Click here for rating systems and abbreviations.2007 Vintage
Alexia by Jane Cooper Wairarapa Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Aromatic, grassy with a soft muskiness to the scent, also. Spicy, warm - some oak, perhaps, adds softness to the wine - and possibly a smidgen of wild ferment. Nice primary flavours of gooseberry, tomato and red capsicum combine with the fullness of peach and apple with well-balanced underlying acidity and tropical fruit, including passionfruit, on the bright, fresh, tasty, finish. 16.5/20. 12% alc. $19.95. 11Aug2008.
Askerne Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Hot and fiery with a chilli-infusion and a slightly gravelly undercurrent to the warm, creamy, toasty flavours with a touch of lemon grass and despite being fermented to dryness, there is a confectionary sweetness to the finish. 7% barrel ferment. 14% alc. $16. 24Nov2007.
Astrolabe Awatere Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A lovely, ripe, juicy style, deliciously pungent and hot with red pepper, tomato stalk, tobacco and juicy green fruit. With its cornucopia of flavour, this wine stands out in a tasting because of its exuberance and vibrancy. 13% alc. $22. 4Sep2007.
Astrolabe Kekerengu Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A delicately pungent yet tantalising aroma of tropical fruit, lime and gooseberry and juicy, fresh, crushed fruit flavours with a silk-coated, fine-grained chalky undercurrent. Sweet herbs, lime, melon and tomato, stonefruit, then passionfruit fill the mouth and a saltiness comes through on the long, dry finish. 91% of the fruit comes from about Kekerengu, abouthalfway between Blenheim and Kaikoura. 13% alc. $26. 3Sep2007.
Astrolabe Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Not as immediately pungent on the nose as the Awatere wine, but fresh and juicy and more typically Wairau to the taste with gooseberry and passionfruit , then horned melon adding to the softer finish. There's lovely purity to this fresh, mouth watering wine and the aftertaste is long and juicy. 13% alc. $20. 4Sep2007.
Auntsfield Long Cow Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Grassy and herbaceous with spicy melon and citrus aromas. It's dry to the taste with greengage and lime flavours with palate richness and fruit sweetness. Some lees and oak work adds interest and creaminess to the long full finish and the aftertaste is zingy and bright. 15% barrel ferment, and 7.5% wild yeasts. A softer creamier style, but still distinctly Sauv Blanc. 213.5% alc. $22.50. 9Oct2007.
Bach 22 East Coast Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Green methoxypyrazine scents are heading to the dark, metallic side - with sweaty, dirty, dank characters overpowering the initially upfront tropical fruit / pineapple / lemons and orange brightness with sulphurous / struck match notes tasking over the finish. Fun label but disappointing wine. 12.5% alc. $11.95. 24Nov2007.
Black Barn Vineyard Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Grassy aroma and a soft creamy flavour with tropical fruit and stonefruit, a zesty brightness and a slightly sweetish finish. There's only about 3g/l residual sugar, but the acids are lower than in most Marlborough styles. Clean, easy drinking style. $21. 9Oct2007.
Blackenbrook Vineyard Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Light golden coloured with powerful aromas and flavours of citrus, apple and nectarine with underlying gooseberry and tropical fruit. Juicy and flavoursome with an amazingly long finish where hints of tobacco, tomato stalk and capsicum emerge. A wine of richness and power with a wonderful texture, bright acidity and balance all the way through. A truly remarkable Nelson Sauvignon Blanc. 13% alc. $18.99. 3Oct2007.
Blind River Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) ) Bright and zesty with grapefruit on the nose and juicy-sweet tangelo-like citrus in the delicately musky palate with vivacious tropical fruit, underlying herbaceousness and a typical gooseberry pungency. Subtle oak adds richness and texture and power yet it's focussed and linear with its pure, citrussy seam. 10 percent of the wine had wild ferment in French oak, the remainder was cool fermented in stainless steel. 13% alc. $27. 24Nov2007.
Boreham Wood Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Herbs and tomato stalk on the nose lead into a warm, fleshy palate with stonefruit, melon, zesty grapefruit-like citrus and a grassy finish. It's young and vibrant with lots of flavour and excellent length that lasts and lasts. If it develops like the 2006 has, it will be stunning. Just give it time. 13.5% alc. $21. 16Oct2007.
Bouldevines Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Citrus, herbs and a hint of passionfruit on the nose and a bright, zesty palate with a touch of sweetness imparting a creamy softness. It's fresh and long with bright grapefruit acidity and scintillating summer herbs and hits the spot with it juicy approachability. 13% alc. $231.50. 20Mar2008.
Burnt Spur Russian Jack Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Zesty and a little sherbetty on the nose with a hint of 'pink bubblegum', there's juicy melon in the clean, crisp palate with a slightly grainy texture, a touch of spice and loads of juicy melon. Served chilled when tasted, it's very refreshing with an earthy, chalky minerality. A blend of Wairau and Awatere Valley fruit. 13% alc. $20. 2Sep2007.
Cable Bay Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale straw. Abundant ripe pear and nut bread scents - it smells like a rich, flavoursome pinot gris, so what a surprise to taste it. There are initially ripe, rounded, juicy pear flavours but it is also spicy and zesty with juicy citrus that tends towards grapefruit and a richness to the creamy backbone with a long finish where the sauvignon blanc signs off with its varietal signature. It becomes a more grassy on the nose a couple of days later but because of its initial softness, it is sure to have wide appeal. 13% alc. $10. 15Jul2008.
Catalina Sounds Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Bright and vivacious with juicy tropical fruit, gooseberry and citrus scents. Reminiscent of a Saint Clair, it's juicy with sweet fruit, a balancing citrussy undercurrent, summer herbs and luscious passion fruit and lime zest on the finish. There's 8% barrel ferment and a small portion of wild ferment. 12.5% alc. $21. 3Sep2007.
Churton Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (c) Lemon gold. Subdued nose, not offering any vibrancy of fruit. Full-bodied palate in the nectarine spectrum, it is pungent and loud but doesn't really say anything until a flourish of pineapple emerges to redeem it. There's a touch of apple too, however the finish is full of methoxypyrazines and is green and sour. 14.5/20. $23.00. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Clayridge Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A touch of gold to the colour, spicy and zesty with tropical fruit and citrus and just a little chilli heat, this powerful, pungent and lightly toasty wine is simply full of flavour with a warm texture, baked golden apples, honey and pungent gooseberry and green bean. Rounded and balanced. Exciting. 13.5% alc. NZ$20.
Clos Marguerite Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Quite chilled when tasted, this fresh, crisp wine showed dry, citrussy, steely aromatics and dominant, sweet-fruited, passionfruit and pineapple flavours with a little bit of capsicum emerging on the finish. I can sense the layers in this complex, dry crisp steely wine that has fruit lushness and a tangy brightness. 13.5% alc. $22. 3Sep2007.
Cloudy Bay Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Shy on nose for sauvignon, hints of musk, tropical fruit, and melon. Light in the palate with a hint of sweetness, a slightly oily palate, apple-like fruit, bubble gum esters and a soft finish - seems to lack pungency and attack but the finish is long and clean and laced with spearmint like herbs. Smoky and pungent but light and lemony with a sweet finish. Tasted a day or so later, it's much more varietal and more powerful and rich with grass, herbs and tropical fruit. 13.5% alc. $33.95. $24Nov2007.
Cloudy Bay Te Koko Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Light golden yellow in colour, this aroma of this wine initially makes you think, "What is it?" until you realise it is oak aged, alternative, style Sauvignon Blanc. Wild yeast influences the floral aroma and the flavours are full of creamy oak, passionfruit and dried pineapple. There’s a funky kind of sewing machine oil character and the finish is pungent and long. 13.5% alc. $49.99. 4Aug2010.
Coal Pit Vineyard Cinquante Central Otago Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Not overly racy on the nose - quite subdued in fact with peasy scents, a touch of citrus and a subtle suggestion of oak. The green pea notes carry though to the initially soft textured palate which becomes quite zesty and citrussy with a honeyed overlay and opens up with pineapple and passionfruit and finishes with a full, rich and lingering pungency. Feijoa, melon, grass and red capsicum make their presence known too. 12.5% alc. $20. 24Jun2008.
Coopers Creek Early Release Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Full of the vibrant fruit that made Marlborough sauvignon blanc a worldwide success, there's gooseberry, feijoa, lime and passionfruit playing on a backbone of fresh, grassy herbaceousness with a long, long mouth-filling flavour that lasts long after the wine has been swallowed. Fresh and delicious. 13% alc. $17. 21May2007.
Culley Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Very pale. Bubble gum esters on nose and in palate, this is so, so young, it's hardly wine yet. But wait. Mint and coriander and all sorts of delicious summer herbs, with hints of tomato, apple and pineapple underpinned by a slightly oily texture with hints of gooseberry and an explosion of deliciousness on the finish. Do I detect a hint of sweat. Yes I do. Bright, tasty and refreshing, it stood out when tasted blind amongst a whole raft of 2006's. 13% al.c $19.90. 8Sep2007.
Dashwood Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A bright, fresh, young SB with out any addition of oak or funky wild yeast. After all the oaky wines it is crisp and refreshing and would do well in a wine show lineup against the oaky wines. Tropical fruits, pineapple, grass, a citrussy infusion and perhaps a touch of BO - and those tarragon / fennel / chervil herbs coming through. Juicy, approachable, fresh and bright, underlying earthiness, nice on its own but has enough power and richness to make it enjoyable with food. 17/20. $18.00. 13% alc. 7Sep2008.
Dog Point Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Smoke, gooseberry, passionfruit and a vegetal / grassy nuance to the aroma, it's grassy and herbaceous to the taste with capsicum to the fore and some steely notes too. There's a hint of toastiness and a bright, punchy, vibrant citrussy undercurrent with tropical fruit and hints of peachy stonefruit on the long, pungent finish. Seems a little 'old-fashioned' in style, but show it quality by the way it opens up in the glass. A superb expression of Marlborough. 13.5% alc. $23. 24Nov2007.
Dog Point Section 94 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (c) Light gold with a green glint. A little sauvignon-like on the nose, like an older sauvignon with dried grass clippings after rain on a hot day together with cape gooseberry, guava and honeyed tropical fruit. Gentle in its attack with a smooth texture, it's full of sauvignon flavour with barrel aging and wild yeast leesy connotations and richness to the full-bodied lingering finish. An excellent example - perhaps the best - of NZ's 'alternative' Sauvignon style. 13.5% alc. $37.99. 11Feb2009.
Dolbel Estate Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Some some oak interest and with a warm texture, this rich, full-bodied, gently barrel-fermented style has savvie's grassy disposition, a lightly grainy texture and a touch of stonefruit - becoming quite savoury, from the yeast lees aging, on the finish. 17/20. 14% alc. $22. 25Sep1008.
Drylands Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Mouthfillingly rich from the outset with fruit salad, tropical fruit, herbs, honey and toasted apples, there is lots going in this lovely rich powerful sweet-fruited savvy. It has pungency and power and a salty tang to the herbaceous, zesty, long, juicy finish with great length. Excellent. 13% alc. $NZ20. 24Nov2007.
Esk Valley Black Label Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Light green gold with a fresh fruity tropical fruit aroma hinting of pineapple and gooseberry, and crisp, fresh, dry, citrussy flavours with a strong gooseberry undercurrent, hints of nettles, herbs and limes. It's warm and full-bodied with a slightly oily texture and a balanced softness to the long, tangy finish. 13.5% alc. 5g/l rs. $20.50. 14Aug2007.
Farmgate Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Served slightly chilled, this has delicately pungent herbaceous aromas and soft and creamy flavour but the chilling enhances the crisp freshness. Subtle nuances of herbs and a fine seam of tangerine acidity back up the crunchy peachy fruit. Becomes quite pungent and lasting. A fabulous food style - perfect with all sorts of salad and vege greens. 14% alc. $25. 2May2008.
Greystone Waipara Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Soft, green and grassy smelling with hints of lemon and perhaps even a nuance of 'sweat'. Soft and just a little austere to start but very quickly the vibrant citrus, melon, tropical fruit and apple flavours fill the palate with their fruitiness and there's a delicate infusion of summer herbs. 13.5% alc. $19.50. 19Oct2007.
Highfield Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Citrus and just a hint of musky sweat on the nose and summer herbs to the fore in the oily palate. With grapefruit initially the dominant fruit it seems 'austere' to start but opens up beautifully with delicious sweet melon, stonefruit, tropical fruit and a touch of sweetness on the rounded mouthfilling and pungent finish. 13% alc. $20.99. 16Jan2008.
Hunters Marlborough Kaho Roa Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A little subdued on the nose with leesy aromatics dominating. A dry style with gooseberry, banana and spice from the 25% new French oak. A mix of wild and cultured yeasts. Two-years-on tasting. 13.5% alc. $23.90. 23Jul2010.
Hunters Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) On the nose it’s a little bit sweaty with a touch of zesty sherbet - perhaps limes or lemonade, plus grass and hints of capsicum. The sweaty component comes through on the palate together with capsicum, sweet pea, apple and tropical fruit with a touch of chilli heat. Loads and loads of flavour yet still quite herbaceous with a sweaty apocrine bitterness to the finish that is a bit of an anti climax. 15.5. 27Apr2008.
Isabel Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Fragrantly aromatic with an orange zest infusion to the distinctive sauvignon scent and the taste is bright and punchy with a crisp herbaceous undercurrent and a firm acid spice. A warmth and richness to the finish imparts a pleasing textural complexity, no doubt from the 20% that had been fermented in older oak barrels - although you cannot taste the oak because the fruit simply sings. 13.5% alc. $20. 9May2008.
Jackson Estate Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Youthful and spritzy with a herbaceous and slightly floral aroma and a citrussy palate. Light, bright, sprightly and clean with loads of apparent acidity when tasted next to the previous vintage, but really hits the spot when consumed straight from the fridge on a gorgeous hot day. 13.5% alc. $22.50. 24Nov2007.
Jackson Estate Grey Ghost Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale lemon. A big oaky style - so much so that the oak can't hide anywhere in this wine. A funky, wild yeast barrel fermented style that leaves gives a drying sensation in the mouth but embellished with bright fruit and plenty of it - pineapple, pawpaw, lime and green passionfruit and a smoky, almost tobacco overtone. Pungent aftertaste with a classical herbaceousness. Crisp and long. 16.5/20. $34.99. 13% alc. 7Sep2008.
Jules Taylor Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Juicy, vibrant and punchy with musk, sweat pea and sweet citrus aromas and a grassy, herbaceous undercurrent to the tropical fruit, lime and grapefruit flavours. Intense and zesty with a powerfully long finish and fabulous length. 13% alc. $17.99. 5Dec2007.
Julicher Martinborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) On first tasting, this seems an older, oak-aged style with a soapy, floral aroma, soft tropical and peach fruit over an apple backbone with a peasy vegetal backbone, but the next day a puregrapefruit zestiness totoally drives the wine with vibrant flavours of bright summery herbs and hints of spearmint. Partially oak aged. 13.5% alc. $19.95. 24Nov2007.
Lawson's Dry Hills Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A slightly deeper lemon gold colour has been aided and abetted by a smidgen of oak, which adds textural complexity to this ripe, juicy, pungent flavour with hints of grapefruit, cherimoya fruit, a herbaceous, citrussy character and a lemony backbone which keeps the delicious sweet fruit in check. 13% alc. $NZ21. 24Nov2007.
Mahi Boundary Farm Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale in colour. Caramel on nose- sweet mealy, wild barrel ferment, caramel notes in palate - but this is actually quite well done. Well-balanced, lovely honeyed herbaceous notes underpin the wine, pineapple sage flower perhaps with that combination of herbaceous and sweetness, I do get a touch of pineapple too. Fleshy and full with grilled peach notes coming through, underlying tart fruit (with a touch of gooseberry and citrus) and although there is obvious oak on the finish, it sits very nicely in this wine. Very Good. 18+/20. $24.00. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Mahi Francis Vineyard Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Lemon coloured. Shy on nose - perhaps a hint of oak. Citrus the most dominant fruit in the palate, with a touch of honey - yes most definitely a touch of oak in palate that has softened the wine. Funky, creamy, opening up as the wine traverses the palate. Green passionfruit, apple, melon, a sprinkling of lemongrass, lovely underpinning of citrus and a full round finish. I love the way this wine opens up but it does need to be coaxed out of its shell. The aftertaste is gorgeous (buttery again) and the wine simply gets better and better. 17/20. $24.00. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Mahi Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale in colour, there's a funky wild yeast scent but well proportioned in the context, with hints of passionfruit and lime. Lemony, leesy and just a little spritzy in the palate with a dry grainy mouthfeel, this has subtle but noticeable oak. Becomes quite complex and juicy with the bright fruit rearing above the winemaking intrusion to reveal pawpaw, passionfruit, lime and a grassy, herbaceous undercurrent. Freshly zested tangelo peel lingers on the full-bodied, slightly earthy finish. Interesting and complex with a fruit sweetness to the flavour that lasts and lasts. Serious and exciting. 18+/20. $19.00. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Man O' War Waiheke Island Gravestone Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) There's richness to the light yellow-gold hue. The nose is creamy with hints of butterscotch and smoky oak scents. There's a full-bodied richness on entry to the palate with a smooth, creamy, slightly oily texture. Punchy Sauvignon Blanc flavours emerge mid palate tailing off on the finish to leave a toasty, nutty character on the strong, complex finish. A bold wine. 14% alc. $35. 26Oct2008.
Margrain Martinborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Immediately this seems a more warmer, rounded style, perhaps because it's from Martinborough, not Marlborough. Perfumed with a musky aroma and soft melon notes underpinned with a juicy, zesty, spritzy texture and tangelo fruit, a touch of passionfruit and a bubblegum sweetness to the finish. Clean, zesty and long. 13.5% alc. $24. 24Nov2007.
Matahiwi Estate 'Holly' Wairarapa Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A year older 'alternative' style, it is quite appealing for Chardonnay lovers with its creamy oak and peachy fruit scents. A well-made, well-balanced oak-aged style with a wild yeast influence, the peachy characters carry through to the soft mealy palate where Sauvignon's typical pungency combined with more classic flavours firmly asserts their stamp on the long, full finish. We rate this wine 'Yum' and the Wine of the Tasting. This was conduced by surveying the contents of the bottles the next day. 18/20. 12.5% alc. $25.95. 6Nov2008.
Matahiwi Wairarapa Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Very pale lemon, a touch of anise herbaceous (fennel, tarragon, chervil) on the nose and a bright citrussy flavour with a creaming soda nuance. A touch oily and perhaps a little sweet, it is quite soft and easy to drink. A seemingly lighter style of sauvignon blanc but quickly fills out to debunk that statement. If it is an alternative style, it does it quite with elegance. A little grainy in texture and a fruity finish with a sweetish, lemon lolly overtone. Is it unripe fruit with sugar to prop it up? Nevertheless, I would drink it. 16/20. $18.00. 12% alc. 7Sep2008.
Matua Valley Paretai Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Incredibly pale, just the lightest tint of straw, this smells tantalising and fresh with a myriad of aromas that suggest ripe tropical fruit, summery herbs, day lily flowers, capsicum and even a suggestion of 'sweat'. Lemon and grapefruit tease the palate then the incredibly rich oily slippery texture becomes the key focus of attention with flavours of grass, passionfruit and melon combining in harmony. It's not too sweet, not too dry, just impeccable power and balance, but most of all, purity. Great flavour throughout. Great after flavour too. It's a wine with jazz and pizzazz! 13.5% alc. $28. 24Nov2007.
Matua Valley Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pungent and tasty with gooseberry on nose and a bright, fresh, zesty palate with gooseberries, herbs and limes. Very dry, quite spritzy with a hot capsicum-filled pungent finish and a hint of B.O. with time. A totally interesting wine with fruit from Wairau and Awatere Valleys. 13.5% alc. NZ$20. 24Nov2007.
Mills Reef Reserve Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale straw gold. On the nose there is sewing machine oil, wheat, funk, wild yeast gone wrong, what is this wine trying to say? Dry and flinty with richness to the texture, but the flavours are all wrong. Like a previous wine in the blind tasting, there's a nuance of honeycomb and caramel, so it obviously has oak. A subtle infusion of juicy orange redeems the finish for a while, but the funky character has a greenness to it. Seems to have a mix of ripe and unripe and appears to be overworked in the winery. Originally thought not nice at all, but I actually like the custard and apricot aftertaste - it reminds me of a classic childhood dessert. 15/20. $20.95. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Momo Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Bright and citrussy on the nose, quite pungent with a hint of capsicum, the initial bracing, tart flavour is full of crisp granny smith apples and limes with pineapple the dominant tropical fruit. It's fresh and vibrant with plenty of tangy flavour, a herbaceous undercurrent and a coriander leaf oiliness with grapefruit sherbet on the pungent aftertaste. Made by Seresin Estate. 13.5% alc. $19.95. 30Aug2007.
Montana "B" Brancott Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) There's a hint of 'sweat' joining lime and gooseberry on the nose and sweet tropical fruit, lime and pineapple in the palate with a herbal twist. Long and tasty, and despite the sweet fruit entry, it finishes crisp and dry with a spicy, zesty freshness and a lasting finish. 14% alc. $33.99. 16Jan2008.
Nautilus Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Very pale, youthful. Herbaceous on the nose and loads of flinty, fume, tobacco characters in the palate, it is fresh and lemony with a spritzy sherbetty zest, underlying gooseberry and capsicum, and a touch of fennel. It seems a little simple at first but with increasing richness on the finish, this is a drinkable, clean and totally user-friendly wine. 16.5/20. $21.95. 13.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Neudorf Brightwater Sauvignon Blanc 2007 - Nelson (sc) There's a softly herbaceous and red apple scent to this light straw coloured wine. Bright acidity at first in the palate with herbs and sweet pea notes, apple and just a touch of subtle honeyed oak adding roundness and softening the finish, which has a spicy, citrus zest infusion and a touch of tropical fruit with SB's typical pungency to the aftertaste. A portion was wild fermented in old oak with aging on yeast lees to add texture and complexity. 13.5% alc. $21.99. 18Jun2008.
O:Tu Marlborough Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Bright, fresh, crisp and tasty with tropical guava and a gooseberry purity, there's a richness to the exotic tropical fruit finish with a lovely, salty tang to the lingering juicy aftertaste. The only wine at this stage from Otuwhero Estates, who are on the coastal side of State Highway 1 near Blind River on the southern side of the Awatere. This wine gets top marks for branding too. $21. 2Sep2007.
Palliser Martinborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Shy on nose at first but sweet pea notes emerge. Tropical fruit and grapefruit-like citrus in palate with underlying sweet summer herbs, a touch of tomato stalk and a bright, vibrant finish with great explosion of sauvignon richness and power and incredible length. Power, power, power. 13.5% alc. NZ$22. 24Nov2007.
Palliser Pencarrow Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Fresh, crisp and juicy with a green fruit richness (green melon, perhaps), a tangelo brightness, a well proportioned herbaceousness and fruit sweetness on the long, bright, tasty, zesty finish. Predominantly Martinborough fruit with some from Gladstone and Marlborough too, it's tasty with plenty of user appeal. 13% alc. $20.50. 9Oct2007.
Pegasus Bay Sauvignon Semillon 2007 (sc) Lemon straw gold in the glass, clear and lustrous. There's baked spice apple and dried pineapple on nose with an earthy slightly smoky nuance and it is sweet-fruited to the taste with appple, lime, pineapple, grass, sweet herbs, smoky oak and wild yeasts nuances. Texture is slightly grainy and passionfruit flavuors develop as the wine changes as it is savoured. Love the touch of candied fennel on the warm, rounded, full-bodied and comforting finish. The oak comes though again on the lingering grassy aftertaste. 18/20. 14% alc. $26.95. 26Jul2008.
Ra Nui Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Richardson Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Very pale. Steely scents with ripe apple and dried hay. Clean, crisp, focussed, gooseberry and melon flavours with capsicum and tomato fleshing out to a luscious stonefruit finish with apple shimmering through the aftertaste. A touch of natural yeast and older barrel aging adds a creamy richness 13% alc. $25.99. 22Oct2008.
Richmond Plains Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Grassy, herbaceous and pungent (hot breath) with juicy, tropical guava flavours, power and pungency and lots and lots of juicy sauvignon flavour. 12.5% alc. $19.95. 24Nov2007.
Rippon Lake Wanaka Sauvignon Blanc 2007 Rich and textural with bright, citrussy fruit that paves the way for the explosion of tropical fruit and passionfruit. It's layered nicely onto a crisp, steely backbone and the long finish is almost pungent. If you are into yeasts you can pick up the partial wild ferment characters on the nose and the 40% barrel work adds richness but not flavour. A pleasant surprise - as I've never tasted savvie this good from Otago for a long, long time. I think it will be a humdinger this summer. 9Oct2007. 9Oct2007.
Riverby Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Very dry, crisp and fresh with upfront lime and grapefruit peel acidity balanced by a pleasing slippery softness and phenolics adding a slightly grainy 'mineral' edge. Classic gooseberry and bean flavours push their way through and the increasingly pungent citrussy finish is long bright and clean. 13.5% alc. NZ$22. 13Feb2008.
Ruby Bay SV Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Aromatic and floral on nose. Spritzy and zesty to the taste with so much upfront lemon/lime acidity, it tastes a little like Riesling. Clean, fresh, refreshing and punchy and apart from its pungent melon finish, it lacks some of the varietal expression we expect of the grape but wait ….. the varietal character of sauvignon blanc emerges and it's long and tasty. So wait and let the flavours come through. 14% alc. $20. 24Nov2007.
Sacred Hill Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Saint Clair Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Crammed with vibrantly aromatic passionfruit and gooseberry and lime on the nose, the aroma is reminiscent of last year's stunning Block 6. It's light lemon gold in colour and juicy and zesty in the palate with vibrant fruit, sweet pea, summer herbs and a powerful, pungent, tangy finish. 13% alc. $16.99. 8Aug2007.
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 1 'Foundation' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A little more restrained on the nose with gooseberry and a hint of pineapple but more obviously oily in texture with upfront gooseberry and lime, a salty citrussy tang, a dash of white pepper, a hint of capsicum and passionfruit taking over the long, juicy finish. A soft, fleshy wine, the fruit richness covers the acidity and underlying spiced apple emerges to linger. I imagine this would be excellent with salt and pepper squid, and with that apple nuance it would also be an excellent accompaniment to a roast pork cracking snack. 13% alc. $24.99. 8Aug2007.
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 2 'Swamp Block' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 3 '43 Degrees' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Tantalising gooseberry and lime on the nose with a hint of that unique Marlborough 'sweat', it's bright, zesty and tangy to the taste with upfront citrus, tangelo peel and summer herbs then gooseberry and passionfruit on the long, focussed finish. Showing lovely purity and intensity of fruit, this exciting wine comes from the last block that Saint Clair harvested which is named 43 degrees because that is the orientation of the vine rows. 13.5% alc. $24.99 Aug2007.
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 4 'Sawcut' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Soft, peachy aromas and spicy, citrussy, tangy flavours with gooseberry, apple, white peach and summer herbs over a dry chalky backbone with a mealiness from the yeast lees aging coming through to add softness and richness to the rounded finish. It's a little like a Sancerre wine in that it has a fumé smoky character even though it has not seen oak and also reminiscent of unoaked chardonnay in a way but the sauvignon signature of the fruit adds a punchy brightness to the finish. 13.5% alc. $24.99. 8Aug2007.
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 6 'Oh! Block' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 8 'Friar's' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Saint Clair Pioneer Block 11 'Cell Block' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Saint Clair Vicars Choice Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Straw gold. Passionfruit on nose with a delicate touch of grassy herbaceousness and warmth, perhaps a hint of oak. Full of green-skinned fruit in palate (lime, gooseberry, greengage plums) together with grass and a touch of capsicum, racy acidity is balanced by an almost honeyed overlay that softens the finish - passionfruit and stonefruit emerge and the lingering flavour is creamy and long. 17.5/20. $17.95. 12.5% alc. 7Sep2008.
Saint Clair Wairau Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) The pre-bottling sample is quite restrained on the nose with a delicate floral perfume and a hint of talc, then that distinctive sweaty character starts to emerge. Mouthfilling, rich and spicy with a silky texture, vibrant tropical fruit, gooseberry, passionfruit, hints of pineapple and sweet underlying Marlborough greens, the finish is dry and powerfully long with banana passionfruit, summer herbs and grapefruit lingering for ages. 13% alc. $31.99 8Aug2007.
Seifried Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) At first there's nettles and gooseberry on the nose but vigorous swirling finally makes the wine reveal some nectarine scents and the slightest nuance of musk. Bright, crisp and fresh with seemingly a ton of acidity on the first taste, herbaceous greens mingle with gooseberries and green apples while hints of pineapple-like tropical fruit add a balancing sweetness. The finish is dry and vivacious and when the after flavour kicks in, the mouth is filled with passionfruit. 13% alc. $18.00. 26Aug2007.
Seresin Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale in colour, youthful, and herbal with an initial waft of B.O. on the nose, this is bright and zesty to the taste. Upfront lime-tinged citrus gives way to more classic gooseberry and herbs with a touch of apple, tropical fruit and just a hint of tomato on the finish. Long and full with a rounded completeness. 5% Semillon adds to the blend. 40% was wild feremnted and approx 15%, including the Semillon was fermented in older oak. There's no funky wild yeast or oak flavour but these winemaking components have added a textural complexity. Becoming richer and richer with time in the glass, with hints of pineapple emerging, it's a wine that will take considerable aging. 13.5% alc. $25. 21Mar2008.
Schubert Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (c) Bright lemon gold. Honeyed and slightly sweetish, apricot, unripe peach, citrus and just a little cardboardy. An older wine, a touch flabby, and seems to be made in a big Chardonnay style with butterscotch on the finish. Nevertheless, it has a rich finish. Just not distinctly varietal. $unknown. 13% alc. 7Sep2008.
Sileni Cellar Selection Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Bright lemony flavours with a slightly oily texture, gooseberry and tropical fruit, underlying grassiness and a softly sweet, pungent finish. 12.5% alc. $20. 4Sep2007.
Sileni 'The Straits' Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Racy and vibrant with green melon and a green apple oiliness, a touch of honey and lots of lime, this rich style traverses through a whole spectrum of delicious fruit to culminate in a powerful, pungent finish with a delicious aftertaste. 12.5% alc. $24. 4Sep2007.
Spy Valley Marlborough Sauvigon Blanc 2007 (sc) Talk about passionfruit, this has so much of the beautifully scented green, purple and yellow passionfruit, it is like the vine has totally taken over the fence, the shed and everything else in its way. It is bright, fresh, lively and vivacious with summer herbs, lime and horned melon (aka kiwano) adding to the tropical flavours, a gorgeous richness and texture and Marlborough's signature pungency too. A wine you'd want to drink in any social situation. It's simply delicious.13% alc. $16.90. 1Jul2008.
Southbank Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A little shy on nose but soon reveals it frutiness and classic Marlborough 'greens' with a touch of lime sherbet too. However seems overly astringent with a gummy texture. Straight forward, simple commercial style. 12.5% alc. $19.99. 24Nov2007.
St Jerome Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Grassy, oily and a little sweetish with underlying lemon peel acidity, this is a reasonably simple, juicy, quaffable style. 13.5% alc. 2Sep2007.
Sugar Loaf Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Gooseberries and limes on the nose and a lovely rich palate with melons, herbs, citrus and a surge of tropical fruit on the aftertaste. Ripe and pungent, it exudes palate richness and flavour. A blend of 2/3 Awatere and 1/3 Wairau Valley fruit. 13% alc. $17. 3Sep2007.
Sugar Loaf Founders Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Pale in colour, this pungently scented crisp, fresh, grassy wine is full of the taste of summer. It's juicy and crunchy with lime, tropical fruit, gooseberry, nectarine and zingy herbs with a vibrancy to the bright and long tasty finish. 13% alc. $18.99. 10Oct2007.
Summerhouse Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Quite herbaceous and grassy with nettle, tangy limes and grapefruit, hints of gooseberries and a passionfruit richness to the pungent finish. Crisp and refreshing, opens up beautifully. 13% alc, $21.95. 4Sep2007.
Te Mania Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Delicately citrussy on nose but loads of 'sweat' as well, it's pungent and powerful in palate with ultra-juiciness and expressive tropical fruit on finish. As the wine evolves some bean-like characters emerge, there are hints of pencil shavings and a bright citrussy backbone. Shows potential but needs time to let intricacies evolve. 13% alc. $17.95. 24Nov2007.
Te Mania Nelson Reserve Sauvignon 2007 (D) Light lemon gold. Hints of pineapple and honeycomb on the funky nose, a little malty and wheaty in palate with a touch of caramel - this has upfront juiciness, a rich mid-palate and is a little reminiscent of the Te Koko style. There's a racy undercurrent of lime and mandarin to balance the initial sweetness, the texture becomes a little grainy and more stonefruit notes emerge on the lingering leesy, and slightly smoky finish. But the aftertaste is slightly sour. 16.5/20. $24.95. 13% alc. 7Sep2008.
Te Mata Cape Crest Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Light yellow gold with a powerful mesmerising scent reminiscent of exotic fruits, yellow guava, stonefruit, pineapple, flower meadows, semi-dried hay and mealy yeasty funk, it's distinctly sauvignon to the taste with varietal pungency the driving force. A little grainy in texture, a touch grassy, some underlying herbaceousness, exotic tropical fruits and stonefruits with a rich, full-bodied aftertaste and barrel fermentation adding complexity, the blend is complemented by Semillon (13%) and Sauvignon Gris (2%), and 1/3 of the French oak is new. 13.5% alc. $26.99.12Mar2008.
Terrace Heights Estate Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Crisp and bright on the nose with a touch of the famous "sweat" and tantalising Marlborough greens - think freshly mown grass, a myriad of herbs, a hint of capsicum and juicy citrus, especially limes. It's tasty, juicy and vibrantly flavoursome with pineapple adding to its lip-smacking allure, together with zesty citrus and herbs and a touch of tomato and capsicum tagging along on the persistent finish which has a chilli heat and seems quite dry. 13.5% alc. $19.95. 8Nov2007.
The Ned Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) A rich, fat style of savvie with some obvious sweetness, there's prickly pear and melon on the nose and a nice, grassy, herbaceous undercurrent to the tropical fruit flavours with a pungent and long flavoured aftertaste. 14% alc. $18. 2Sep2007.
Ti Point Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Tohu Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Trinity Hill White Label Hawkes Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Melon, hints of grass and tropical fruit on the nose, juicy, fresh, crisp and clean to the taste with a nice grainy texture, apple and melon fruit, nettles and a long, dry finish with hints of stonefruit and tropical fruit on the kickback. 12% alc. 2Sep2007.
Twin Islands Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Herbaceous, through and through plus on the nose there's a hint of citrus to the steely scent and it is even citrussier to the taste along with cut grass, summer herbs, capsicum and bean and a rounded finish. As the aftertaste evolves in the palate, it becomes more rich, fleshy and fruit sweet than the rather austere start would have you believe. On its own it seems quite a vegetal style but it is so resoundingly successful with the food, it's a star in its own right.13.5% alc. $18. 1Jul2008.
Two Rivers Convergence Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Dry and crisp to start, the gravelly texture is lean and tight but it opens up with a clean, gooseberry undercurrent to the juicy, tropical fruit finish. Crisp, fresh, exciting. A blend of Wairau and Awatere Valley fruit. 13% alc. 2Sep2007.
Vavasour Awatere Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) First impression is a sweeter style of savvie. There’s a touch of musk and a hint of kiwano amongst the crunchy apple and tropical fruit with a well-balanced liquoricey herb backbone (like fennel and tarragon) and ripe red and yellow capsicum filling the palate with sweet citrus on the finish. Bright and vivacious with fruit sweetness to counter-balance the punchy acidity. Should be superb with salads. 18/20. 27Apr2008.
Vavasour Redwood Pass Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Lovely lime, herb, capsicum, dried grass and tropical fruit aromas and loads of juicy fruit flavours in the sweet-fruited palate that's crammed with lime, green melon, spice, tropical fruit and a powerfully long, toasty finish. 13.5% alc. $14.99. 5Dec2007.
Villa Maria Private Bin Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Water pale but vibrantly fruity with bubblegum, passionfruit, gooseberry and lime aromas joined by a sherbetty, “fizzy fruit” brightness to the taste. It's young, fresh, juicy, zesty and pungent with youthful fruit esters, a slippery texture and crisp, racy acidity keeping the fruit sweetness in check. 13.5% alc. $13.99. 1Aug2007.
Wild South Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc)
Wild South Reserve Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) There's a decent hint of gold to the bright colour of this wine. Full of tropical fruit aromas with a hint of play dough and soft, juicy tropcial fruit flavours, it seems a rather pleasing, mellow drink. Not overly pungent but long and tasty and bright and zesty with a white pepper-tinged finish that completely contradicts the initital 'soft' impression. 13.5% alc. $26.90. 24Nov2007.
Waipara Hills Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Water pale with just the slightest hint of lemon to the hue, this is bright and pungently aromatic with tropical fruit, tangelo and gooseberry on the nose carrying through to the clean, ripe, fruit-filled palate. It's quite dry with a tongue tickling spritziness and an illusion of toastiness to the tangy finish and is as easily as good as last years multiple gold medal winner. A classy savvy that's going to be another star. 13.4% alc. $15.99. 1Aug2007.
Wairau River Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Bright pungent aromas. Spritzy and zesty with a bright dancing texture. Lemon and lime, hints of apple, lots of citrus acidity, classical herbaceous undercurrent, lip smackingly fresh with a touch of tropical fruit sweeteness to the finish. 13.5% alc. NZ$19.95. 24Nov2007.
Whitehaven "Greg" Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Powerful, rich and pungent with passionfruit, lime, a citrussy sweetness and a garden of fragrant summer herbs, this bright, expressive, punchy sauvignon blanc is a blend of Rapaura, Brancott and Kekerengu fruit - the latter location being halfway between Blenheim and Kaikoura. It's dedicated to Whitehaven's founder, Greg White. 13% alc. $18.99.26Sep2007.
William Thomas Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Warm, rich and rounded with passionfruit and apricot aromas and flavours that are bright and scintillatingly fresh with a zesty citrussy seam to the juicy tropical fruit and an undercurrent of summer herbs. The aroma becomes more and more intense in the glass with passionfruit the dominant character while the tropical fruit flavours have a hint of pineapple brightness. Not at all aggressive, it is fatter and richer in style probably because a small portion has been fermented and matured in oak. WOTW Apr2008. 13% alc. $21. 27Apr2008.
Woollaston Nelson Sauvignon Blanc 2007 (sc) Full of juicy fruit, herbs, a touch of spearmint, chalky tannins, an explosion of hot fruity brightness and great pungency to the finish. A wine of balance and harmony and even though from Nelson it's a classic 'old fashioned' Marlborough style with lots of greens. 13% alc. $18. 24Nov2007.
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