The history of the Sauvignon Blanc grape can be trace back to the Loire Valley and Bordeaux in Western France and research has suggested that it is descended of Savagnin varietal. Sauvignon Blanc along with Cabernet Franc are the parents of Cabernet Sauvignon, the two grapes were paired together in the 18th century in Bordeaux to make the much love Cab Sav that we know today.
The Sauvignon Blanc vine often buds late but then the fruit ripens early. This has made it grow well in sunny climates, though not when exposed to extreme heat! In areas where the vines are exposed to high temperatures the grapes will quickly over-ripen and produce a wine with dull flavours and flat acidity. With climate change and rising global temperatures, these factors have now affected when farmers harvest the grapes. Which is now tending to be earlier in the season, over what was done in the past.
This popular white grape is known and loved for its grassy to sweet tropical flavours, grown the world over, the flavours are dependent on the climate in which the grape is cultivated and can offer styles ranging from lean to bountiful. Predominant flavours found in Sauvignon Blanc included grass, peach, melon, citrus, gooseberry, pineapple and passion fruit. This is medium to deep straw colour, high acidity, medium-light bodies wine has become popular the world over as an alternative to Chardonnay. An easy wine to pair with a herd of dominant sauces on chicken or tofu, or pair with an array of cheeses, especially feta or chèvre.
Where Does Sauvignon Blanc Grow?
Grown the world over notably, France, New Zealand, South Africa, Chile, USA, Australia, and Moldova along with Austria, Romania, Hungry, Spain and Argentina. Sauvignon Blanc from France, and particularly the Loire Valley, the cool climate produces fruity, tart wine with lively acidity. Domaine Roger & Didier Raimbault Sancerre Blanc ticks all these boxes and is stylish, mineral and focused, offering up succulent white peach, melon and floral notes.
On the other side of the world 12000 miles away in New Zealand. Marlborough is known for it Sauvignon Blanc and the cool climate produces more citrus focused wines. Ellie Bartow from Ten Sisters (a Women in wine) produces her Sauvignon Blanc from a single vineyard, allowing the terroir to show its full expression in the wine. And it shows with a delightfully fragrant and complex bouquet showing aromas of appetizing tropical fruit and white flowers.
Keeping in the new world and to the warmer climates of South Africa. The area around and to the south of Cape Town enjoys rich soils and coastal winds that keep the climate cool. The Sauvignon Blanc produced here show many characteristics of those from New Zealand. Benguela Cove, situated in Walker Bay, their Lighthouse Sauvignon Blanc opens with aromas of citrus and stone fruit and more delicate nuances of pear and smoke.
“She chose a bottle of Sauvignon Blanc from the kitchen rack and uncorked it. "These are trying times. There have been others, and there will be more." She poured three glasses. "It's essential that we live while we move through them.” - Nora Roberts, The Villa
So, where will your Sauvignon Blanc be hailing from? Cheers!