Friday, March 5, 2010

Sauvignon Blanc Notes

Yesterday on Twitter the kung fu master of social media Rick Bakas held a live sauvignon blanc tasting that dominated Twitter for the evening. Last I saw there were over 350 participants and over 1000 tweets! Great job and huge congrats to Rick! I had the great pleasure to participate and taste some wonderful and interesting wines from CA, NZ and the Loire Valley. I compiled my tasting notes below. Enjoy!

Domaine du Salvard Cheverny Delaille 2008 imported by Kermit Lynch
Sample provided by Loire Valley Wine Bureau

Bring on the funk! Super pale straw yellow color. Faint, funky old world nose. A bit reserved, but I like that in a sauvignon blanc. A whiff of cat pee. (yep… you heard me right… cat pee. A classic sauvignon blanc aroma profile.) I like that too, in moderation. Light body. It also has some mild citrus aromas and flavors. Pleasant acidity. Don’t serve this one too cold or it won’t show you any love. Cave temperature should be about right in my opinion (low to mid 50s.) The finish is crisp and dry with a slight minerality. I really enjoy the subtlety of this wine.

St. Supéry Dollarhide 2008 Sauvignon Blanc
Sample provided by St. Supéry

Extremely pale golden yellow color. Subtle aromas and flavors. Hints of lime and grass. Balanced acidity. Long, pleasant, clean, dry finish. Dry. Again don’t serve too cold. I really prefer this more subtle, elegant style of Sauvignon Blanc to the sledgehammer, over the top pineapple/guava nectar/cat box expressions.

Speaking of which…

St. Supéry Napa Valley 2009 Sauvignon Blanc
Sample provided by St. Supéry

Heeeeeeeeeeeeeere kitty kitty… heeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeere kitty! My husband walked in the door while I was tasting this one and the first thing out of his mouth was not, “hi (inappropriate nickname that I won’t tell you) how’s it going?’ Instead, he said, “why do I smell cat pee?” I just looked up over the rim of my stemware at him and giggled. “Sauvignon Blanc!” I said. He just shook his head. This wine is VERY aromatic with an explosion of tropical fruit and kitty pee. Loads and loads and loads of pineapple, guava, papaya and dare I say it? Juicyfruit chewing gum. A bit heavier in the mouth than I’m accustomed to in a Sauvignon Blanc. VERY long tropical fruit finish.

If you prefer an over the top Sauvignon Blanc, this baby’s for you! However, this is not my personal style preference. I much preferred the reserved, elegant Dollarhide.

Sherwood Estate 2008 Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough NZ
Purchased a glass for $7 at Caffe Driade in Chapel Hill, NC

So I was waiting and waiting and waiting for a distributor appointment yesterday which eventually got rescheduled. YAY! That meant I could start my sauvignon blanc tasting early! So I celebrated by grabbing a glass of sauvie b at the café where I had been waiting. They only had one. So I said to myself, “Not what I would normally drink, but, hey... it's here and so am I.” Just being practical. Heh. This one has classic pale golden yellow color. Austere on the nose with slightly grassy notes. In contrast to the aromas, it is quite flavorful with tropical fruits but not over the top at all. Light body. Nice, crisp acidity, not on the attack like some NZ’s I’ve tasted. Very pleasant, long finish. Dry. I genuinely enjoyed it and didn’t expect to. NICE!

Last but certainly not least:

Danielle de l’Année 2007 Val de LoireSample provided by Loire Valley Wine Bureau

This on just totally knocked my socks off. It is quite different from any Sauvignon Blanc I’ve tasted (and I’ve had a few.) Much richer golden yellow color than I would expect from SB. And WHOA! Tropical fruit Crème Soda on the nose! Also a slight hint of honey. What a total freakshow! This wine has a lush mouthfeel and medium body. Some yellow apple flavor. I’m gonna go ahead and guess it’s been on the lees to develop this creamy texture and wild aromas. VERY aromatic but balanced with a quite lively acidity and minerality. The finish is long and pleasant and dry, but maintains the crème soda and tropical fruit and minerality to the very end. This one surprised me so much that I liked it. I probably would not go for this if you described it to me in advance as I definitely prefer (like I said) a more subtle, elegant style to sauvignon blanc, but was just too weird not to like. That might say something about me, though I’m not sure what.

I hope you enjoyed reading the notes. Please consider joining the wine community on Twitter for some of the upcoming live tasting events. Follow @RickBakas and @NectarWine on Twitter for more details.


Wine Ophelia
- Raelinn

PS - I have no idea whom to credit for the photos but they aren't mine. Found them in a search. If it's yours and you don't want me to use it, I'll take it down, I promise.


  1. Sorry for the lack of visual stimulation on this one. I may add some fun things later, but wanted to get the text up now.

  2. I really want to know the "inappropriate" nickname now.

    What's great is you tried four wines from three different regions. Each was different. That's what is cool about wine.

    Thanks for the quick review and we're looking forward to the next one!

    Josh @nectarwine