Sauvignon Blanc, Coal River

Sauvignon Blanc is a white grape, that has become incredibly popular, with increased plantings in Australia over the last 10 years. It grows best in the cooler wine regions.

Yarra Valley, Adelaide Hills, Margaret River, Orange in New South Wales and Tasmania are all regions which produce wonderful examples of Sauvignon Blanc. The coolest vintages have “grassy”, gooseberry characters, whereas, warmer vintages show more passionfruit flavour, but still with the trademark zingy acidity. In Margaret River, Sauvignon Blanc is often blended with Semillon, this creates a perfect partnership and a fuller style of wine. In New Zealand, Cloudy Bay in the 1980s began producing stunning Sauvignon Blanc wines with extraordinarily intense nettly, gooseberry, and asparagus fruit, that set Marlborough firmly on the world wine map. Today Sauvignon Blanc is now New Zealand's trademark grape.

Sauvignon Blanc is an important white grape in France, especially Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It thrives on the gravelly soils of Bordeaux, where it is blended with Sémillon to produce Bordeaux Blancs and Cru Classé White Graves. Elsewhere in Bordeaux, it is also blended with Sémillon, to produce the amazing dessert wines of Sauternes. In the Loire Valley and particularly on the chalky soils found in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. The wines produced are very different to New World equivalents, they tend to be less pungent, more restrained, mineral with smoky, gunflint notes.

After initial problems, it is now grown very successfully in Chile. The wines are almost halfway between the Loire and New Zealand in terms of fruit character.
The Coal River Valley wine region lies in the south of Tasmania, an easy 15 minutes drive outside of Hobart. It's the apple isle's fastest growing wine region, with almost a fifth of all Tasmanian wines grown there. The region is known for producing superior wines grown over some of the most fertile soil around.

The elements of rainfall, sunshine hours, number of rain days, temperature and overall humidity coalesce and culminate in cool climate conditions ideally suited to growing particular varietals. Predominantly in the reds, the region, as with much of Tasmania has an affinity for making top Pinot Noir however Cabernet, Merlot and some superb Shiraz have been known to emerge from the Coal River Valley too. In the whites, Chardonnay, Riesling and Sauvignon Blanc lead the charge with lesser amounts of Gewürztraminer grown there too. The dense, Pinot Noirs produced in the Coal River Valley region typically have more weight than their New Zealand counterparts with distinct savory notes not unlike the great red Burgundies. They've enamored many a visitor and will continue to do so as premium winemakers flock to the region.
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