New Zealand is home to some of the world’s top Sauvignon Blanc wines. Crisp and refreshing with flavors reminiscent of grapefruit and gooseberry, these wines pair particularly well with seafood dishes and also make great complementary pairings with grilled items like chicken and fish. One of the best New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc’s available now is the 2010 Brancott Estate ($25.99 MSRP).
Sauvignon Blanc is known as the “Savage White,” as it can offer a range of flavors and profiles depending on the type of soil and climate in which the vines are grown. Sauvignon Blanc wines can have an herbaceous and vegetal note sometimes and, if you are used to drinking chardonnays, they can be noticeably drier than other whites. Thankfully, New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc wines are easier to pigeonhole. One of the indicators that a sommelier will look for when blind tasting a wine to determine if it is a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc is the unmistakable aroma of gooseberries. This tartness in the bouquet and palate is a marker that sommeliers look for in determining where a particular wine was grown.
Brancott Estate is a classic New Zealand-style Sauvignon Blanc. It has a pale gold color, a slight note of white pepper, and dominating notes of grapefruit peel and gooseberries on the nose. There is a slight sweetness to this wine which is balanced by a racy acidity and nice mineral notes. While this wine is very food friendly, it would also be a good choice to enjoy on its own. Some wines really need the presence of food to shine, but the 2010 Brancott Estate Sauvignon Blanc stands well on its own merits.
At 13.2% alcohol by volume, some would think that this wine might have a bit of an alcoholic punch, but the alcohol is in balance with the rest of the wine. There is a slight oiliness to the wine, which isn’t a bad quality. Instead, the oiliness adds a textural element to the wine and leaves the mouth lightly coated, which helps give it a slightly longer than usual finish.
Overall, the 2010 Brancott Estate New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc is an excellent wine both on its own and paired with food. Fans of New Zealand wines should definitely try and bottle, and if you have never explored the wines of New Zealand, Brancott Estate makes a great starting place.
Disclosure: I received a sample of this product from Pernod Ricard for review. No other compensation from Pernod Ricard was received.