Sauvignon Blanc originated from the Bordeaux Region of France. The varietal is indigenous to Southwest France; the name can be loosely translated as “wild white.” In addition to France, Sauvignon blanc is grown widely in the southern hemisphere in Chile, Australia, New Zealand, and South Africa, and in Canada, Washington State, California, on the Lake Erie shoreline and in the Finger Lakes. Some Sauvignon Blanc is called Fume’ Blanc, particularly in California, where Robert Mondavi coined the name in reference to Pouilly-Fume’. Most Sauvignon Blanc is dry, although it is commonly blended in the production of dessert wines.
Sauvignon Blanc cultivated in cooler climates has higher acidity and green pepper notes with some tropical fruit. Warmer climate Sauvignon Blanc tends to develop more tropical fruit character, as well as lime, green apple, and peach. Our Sauvignon Blanc, grown in the Suisun Valley California by Lanza Musto Vineyards, is characteristic of the warm climate grapes, and is a crisp, refreshing wine that pairs especially well with chicken, fish, cheeses, and vegetables when served chilled.
Like Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc is sometimes aged in oak to add complexity. We forego the oak aging, producing a fresher, fruitier, more refreshing wine. Personally, we prefer reds when we are in the mood for a complex wine, and prefer whites when we seek fresh, crisp, refreshing chilled wines. The reason that Sauvignon Blanc is often thought of as a reliably good wine is because there is not the same temptation to make the wine something that it may not be. Chardonnay, on the other hand, is often treated more like a red, with oak aging that adds complexity. While that may result in what many oenophiles consider a “great white,” it also may result in a complex but mediocre wine. Sauvignon is a simple, elegant, crisp wine with moderate acidity and citrus notes. While some may not consider it “great” (a matter of opinion) when made from good fruit by a good winemaker, it is reliably a very good wine. When making a good wine, the winemaker must not only understand what the varietal is, but also what it isn’t.
Our Sauvignon Blanc is an excellent choice, especially when chilled, with a variety of cheeses, fresh vegetables, and a white fish on a summer day.