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Happy Sauvignon Blanc Day!

Happy Sauvignon Blanc Day

Somewhere in a factory in China there is a fat man in a shell suit, listening to one of his many copies of Tony Basi's 'Mickey' whilst shedding tears into boxes of about a trillion fidget spinners wondering where it all went wrong. Some fads last, some do not. I suppose if they do then they are not necessarily fads, what does that make them? Crazes? Obsessions? Ultimately fashion. I bet he wishes he had bought a vineyard in Marlborough. 

The continued success of the Sauvignon Blanc grape is largely due to its unique character, particularly its aroma. That classic nasal attack of fresh-cut grass and gooseberry is identifiable to the most casual of wine drinkers. It is, after all, pleasing to sniff a glass of wine and be able to identify it as something that we recognise and like (or possibly loathe). Countless people sit down in the evening to watch Eastenders, or go out to eat at McDonald’s. Not because these are the pinnacle of intellectual drama or fine dining but there is a familiarity to them that as humans we find reassuring. We can trust that a Big Mac will, no matter where we are in in the world, taste like a Big Mac and that someone in the Queen Vic will shout at someone else in the Queen Vic in a forced cockney accent.

Part of the sustained success of the little white grape of the Loire is testament to this and it can often feel as though this old friend has been about forever. But, there was a time when plenty of peoples' knowledge of it stretched no further than Sancerre. We can all remember our first Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc, the explosion of flavour immediately seducing but the style has evolved too. A touch of barrel here, some wild yeast there. There are the stalwarts but also a new breed of wine maker keeping Sauvignon blanc so fine that it continues to blow minds.

Forrest Sauvignon Blanc 2016, Marlborough, New Zealand £13.95

Totally classic Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc. Fresh-cut grass, gooseberry, you've read this tasting note before and I've written it a hundred times. But this is a commendably clean, dry and balanced version, with no rough edges. Glug liberally with some barbecued prawns.

Two Rivers Altitude Sauvignon Blanc 2015 Marlborough, New Zealand £19.95

Something different here. Grassy and precise with fabulous depth and texture, rare power for a wine of this style. Still holds its Marlborough roots but pushing towards the Loire, or the Verdejo-laced wines of Castilla y Leon even. Touch of barrel gives extra weight. If you think you're sick of Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc think again.

The Holy Snail Sauvignon Blanc 2017 Loire, France £9.95

Aha New Zealand! You're not the only one who can make knock your nose off Sauvignon blanc with a picture of an animal on the label and a particularly silly name. Good value if in need of a Savvy B kick.

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