March has finally arrived and boy, how gorgeous was London on this fine Sunday morning! I was actually woken up by the constant tweeting of a little bird, which made me think that life is great and that Spring must be just around the corner! I literally suffer during Winter and i just can’t wait to smell the blooming flowers and the warm breeze.
“Wake up its a beautiful morning,
Feel the sun shining for your eyes.
Wake up its so beautiful,
For what could be the very last time.”, The Boo Radleys
Now that I got this off my chest, let’s go back to the original post. One of the reasons I love Spring so much is that the temperature is perfect now to enjoy more fruity/floral and generally more playful wines. One of the wines I particularly enjoy sipping on warmer March afternoons is Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand! I think this is a brilliant wine to try if you’re looking for a dry, fruity and surely refreshing one. It is a very easy-going and easy-drinking wine – it’s almost difficult to find someone who doesn’t like it. Much like Kelly Taylor from 90210.
What I find particularly interesting about NZSB (let’s just make it shorter) is that it’s one of these types of wine that has pretty much created a frenzy and has a dedicated following. It’s just so widely available and generally fairly priced. But the main reason is that it’s quite appealing and quite expressive with a varied fruit and vegetal spectrum depending on which region it comes from.
Marlborough is the NZSB kingdom, this is where the magic started. Due to the warmer and milder growing conditions, the wine bouquet is full of ripe gooseberry, juicy melon and sweet nectarine aromas with a rather appealing freshness on the palate!
Heading a bit more to the South over to North Canterbury , you find that their SB, which grows under cooler conditions is showing different aromas and flavours. You will be surprised how the aromas of juicy nectarine and melon are replaced by green peppers, tomato stalks (no joke, every time I make a tomato salad I think of Sauvignon Blanc), fresh cut grass and interestingly, passion fruit! It’s really fresh and mouthwatering making it the ideal pair for seafood and shellfish, yumm!!
For your reading pleasure and only *crossing fingers behind the back*, I tasted two lovely wines from the 2 regions mentioned and each of those adds an intriguing twist to the more classic-like profile of the wine.
Michelle Richardson SB: This is a truly explosive Marlborough SB. Staying true to its roots, it delivers a fascinating bouquet of gooseberry and ripe melon aromas followed by bell pepper hints and just a breeze of fresh-cut grass. Really pure fruit and very fresh on the palate. I imagine myself sipping it on a warm Spring afternoon on a terrace with a smile on my face.
Some extra info: 20% of this wine was fermented by wild yeasts. You know the yeast you buy at the shop for baking bread; that one is called commercial yeast, because you can purchase it. Wild yeast, however, lives in the winery environment and and it can start the fermentation of the grape must. It make the mouthfeel more silky and adds texture.
Mt Beautiful SB, North Canterbury: This is not your typical Marlborough SB. Zesty notes and fresh passion fruit aromas dominate the nose along with tomato stalks hints. Very crisp and lively on the palate with a nice, mouthwatering minerality coming from stony/steely flavors. Really refreshing and discretely aromatic. Anytime, anywhere – very drinkable!
Some extra info: The owners want to introduce a new style of NZSB by focusing on the fruit purity and toning down the vegetal notes. The vines are planted on the northern side of the vineyard, so they can benefit from cooler temperatures.
Just to add that both wines, as many NZ wines, are closed with a screw-cap which makes them great “fridge wines”, ie. you can pop them in the fridge and keep enjoying them for the next 3-4 days! Let me know if you like Sauvignon Blanc from NZ and what are some of your favorites?
Note: Both wines were tasted at a Quality Check Tasting at the company I work for. I am only featuring them on the blog because I think that they are good representations of the warmer and cooler climate NZSB and I also like them a lot!
Find these wines with wine-searcher.com