sauvignon blanc

2009 Macari Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc

This time last year I was in Long Island Wine Country with Megan, enjoying some great wine and food, visiting with friends and making new ones. Since we aren’t in Long Island this year I decided to open some wine from the region to help relive the memories from last year. We have lots of red wine in the cellar from that trip, but we were making Indian food last night and I needed a white. I perused around and found the ’09 Macari Vineyards Sauvignon Blanc ($23). (Check out my post “From Poop to Juice” on our visit to Macari Vineyards last year)

My Tasting Notes…

Nose: pear, citrus, grapefruit, fresh cut grass, slate

Taste: sweet pea, lemon zest, minerality, green apple, grapefruit

Mouthfeel: smooth and crisp with racy acidity on the back of the palate

Finish: medium in length with lingering notes of citrus and sweet pea

Final Thoughts….

This is a very nice and complex Sauvignon Blanc that reminds me of a combination of ones from New Zealand and Touraine. You have great fruit forward nature of New Zealand and the racy acidity and minerality of Touraine. In addition it was a great pairing for the Indian food which was Channa Masala and Palak Aloo.



Categories: $20-$30, New York Wines, sauvignon blanc, wine review | Tags: , , , | Leave a comment

Tuesday Quick Sip – 2008 Wairau River Sauvignon Blanc

2008 Wairau River Sauvignon Blanc

Wine Information –

Country: New Zealand

Region: Marlborough

Grapes: 100% Sauvignon Blanc

Aging: 7 months in stainless steel before bottling

Price: $15

wairauriver_sauvblancMy Tasting Notes –

Nose: pear, gooseberry, green pepper, touch of grapefruit

Taste: gooseberry, citrus, sweet pea, touch of grass

Mouthfeel: full body, slightly watery, crisp but could use more acid

Finish: long, fruity and refreshing

Overall the flavor and aroma profile was very nice, but I felt it could have used more acidity. For 15 bones it is a solid effort and paired great with our stir fry with peanut sauce. Interesting note, this is Wairau River’s first CarboNZero wine. CarboNZero is a government backed program to help individuals, institutions and events manage, measure and mitigate their greenhouse gas emissions. Pretty cool – a nice added bonus to enjoying your wine.


Categories: $10-$20, sauvignon blanc, wine review | Tags: , , | Leave a comment

2006 Chester Gap Sauvignon Blanc

With this unseasonably warm weather hitting the Richmond area, it was time to break out a crisp Sauvignon Blanc, from Virginia. We broke out the 2006 Chester Gap Cellars Sauvignon Blanc to compliment our Indian food as well as the warm weather. Sauvignon Blanc would not be considered one of Virginia’s best known grapes but certain wineries including Chester Gap have the proper growing conditions to do well with the varietal. Chester Gap’s combination of high elevation, eastern exposure and rocky soil structure lay the foundation for a crisp mineral driven Sauvignon Blanc.

chestergapsauvblancMy Tasting Notes

Nose – citrus, wet stone, grass and fresh cut hay

Taste – melon, citrus, mineral

Mouthfeel – medium body, slightly tart and crisp

Finish – medium length, clean and “stony”

Although I had tasted this wine at the winery last summer, it still surprises me that a Loire style Sauvignon blanc can be produced here in Virginia. At $15 it isn’t a bad price either, especially for the quality it delivers. It was great with the Indian food, but would go great with shell fish dishes as well. Head up to Chester Gap and visit Bernd, and pick up a bottle.


Categories: $10-$20, sauvignon blanc, virginia wine, wine review | Tags: , , | 1 Comment

Atari and Wine

I would never have thought that the Atari video games that I grew up with would have a connection to good Napa Valley wines. Before Dennis and Judy Groth started their vineyard and winery, Dennis was one of the key architects for the firm that built Atari, a consumer electronic company, into a 2 billion dollar company. In 1984 Atari was sold, and that was enough incentive (and I am sure cash) for Dennis and Judy to expand on their obsession for wine, in a big way.

Groth Vineyard and Winery was established in 1982 and is located in the Oakville AVA of Napa Valley. In addition to their 121 acre Oakcross estate, they also own and operate the 44 acre Hillview Vineyard South of the winery. Check out the cool layout below of the vineyard plantings. If you go to the actual website and click on the different lots, it gives you a actual picture of the vines in that lot, very cool.

The 2006 of Sauvignon Blanc had a delayed bud break which actually saved the grapes from any damage during a record heat wave in July. A great “Indian Summer” during the month of October allowed the grapes to reach optimum brix, and TA levels without hitting monster sugar levels. The wine was made of 96% Sauvignon Blanc and 4% Semillon both of which were whole cluster pressed prior to fermentation. After fermentation 70% of the Sauv Blanc went in to retired Chardonnay barrels for aging (sur lies) while the other 30% went into stainless steel tanks. The older oak barrels were used to age the wine perfectly without imparting any oak flavor into the delicate fruity varietal.

My Tasting Notes –

Nose – Grapefruit, papaya, honey

Taste – Lemon, lime, mineral/rocks, pineapple

Mouthfeel – smooth and round, fuller bodied (due to the barrel aging) than most Sauv Blancs initially, turning crisp and refreshing towards the finish

Finish – nice length, smooth with a hint of almond

This was definitely a different Sauvignon Blanc from most I have had. I would say that if you want a Sauvignon Blanc that exemplifies Sauvignon Blanc’s this isn’t it. But if you want a great white wine from California than I would definitely recommend this wine. We had this wine with mushroom barely soup which I am not sure was the best pairing. I think I would have preferred a Red Burgundy or a Barbera instead, but that will be for next time.


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Categories: california, Groth, sauvignon blanc, wine review | Leave a comment