Sauvignon Blanc, Hawkes Bay

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.
New Zealand’s second largest wine region (behind Marlborough), Hawkes Bay is on the east coast of the north island, to the south of Gisborne, and is New Zealand’s leading wine and food tourism destination. Many of the finest wines come out of the Hawkes Bay wine region.

A temperate climate with lots of sun is suited to superb Chardonnays in the whites and also later ripening red varieties like Cabernet Sauvignon, Merlot, Cabernet Franc (Bordeaux varietals) and Syrah.

A very special sub region in the Hawkes Bay region is the Gimblett Gravels. This sub region was thought to be not even good enough to graze sheep on, but in 1981 was planted under vine and now represents some of the world’s finest full bodied red wines. The unique terroir of the Gimblett Gravels comes from the old Ngaruroro River which until flowed through what is now known as the Gimblett Gravels, dumping gravel and heavy sands. The earthquake of 1931 changed the course of the river, leaving bare 800 hectares of prime new world terroir. Being 15km inland it doesn’t get the cooling sea breezes, so the region can get much hotter than the rest of Hawkes Bay.
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  1. Te Mata Cape Crest Sauvignon Blanc 2018
    Pale lemon with flecks of lime-green, Cape Crest Sauvignon Blanc ’18 overflows with tropical fruit and rich, succulent acidity. Aromatic notes of fresh lime, gooseberry, lychee and pineapple, give way on the palate to juicy pear, ripe grapefruit, citrus blossom and ... Learn More
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