(2022) I recently tasted Pyramid Valley's 'Sauvignon+' from North Canterbury and made it my 'Wine of the Week'. Not to be confused, this is their straight Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, and does not have a UK retail listing at time of review. Fruit is sourced from the biodynamic Churton Vineyard, north east facing slopes on loess over clay. Fruit is pressed into larger oak demi-muids (600L) barrels for fermentation with ndigenous yeast, and rests on the lees for six months. Quite subtle confit lemon and leafy, soft herb aromas like dill and parsley, then a little mango and passion fruit emerges. A very pure and intense lemon palate, but fat, ripe Amalfi lemons, lovely texture and mouth-filling weight, but super-clean to the finish.
(2021) Pale green/straw colour, and quite a reserved nose for a Marlborough Sauvignon, there is a touch of elderflower and grassiness, but a gravelly note too. Sweet and ripe on the palate, abundant ripe fruit here, some tangy citrus but a peachier mid-palate, though the sweetness of fruit maintains into the finish. Quite vibrant, just a touch of that sweet 'n sour character, but nice.
No UK stockist listed at time of review.
(2021) Alan Scott is a sizeable producer of quality commercial wines, with vineyards neighbouring Cloudy Bay in Marlborough. This has an obvious degree of residual sugar sweetness, which is common with Pinot Gris, both from Marlborough and the original model for such wines, Alsace. It is rich in aroma, flavour and texture, the character quite tropical, with orange peel and juicy citrus playing against that sweetness and medium- to full-bodied, mouth-filling weight. Versatile for sipping on its own or with some foods, watch the video for more information and food-matching suggestions.
(2020) Hand-picked from its own vineyards in Marlborough, Dog Point's Sauvignon is bright, crisp and super-fresh, more typical in Marlborough style than the barrel-fermented 'Section 94' cuvée, with huge punch and verve. Passion fruit is there, with tropical notes suggesting lychee and guava, a touch of capsicum, but really all about the fruit. In the mouth the texture has some richness and mealiness to it, the citrus blast of the acidity balanced perfectly against that more unctuous, tropical fruit into a dry and beautfully balanced finish. Typical and yet not, this is a fine example of Marlborough's unique Sauvignon style.
(2020) A blend from six vineyards, 10% is wild-fermented in barrel, 15% wild-fermented in tank, the rest inoculated but stays on the lees. Pungent elderflower nose, lots of passion fruit and flinty, sulphide notes. Zesty citrus in the background. The palate is all about that dry, zingy citrus lemon and grapefruit pith. The finish verges on a touch of endive bitterness.
(2020) From the southerly region of Ward, more exposed to southerly winds and producing tight bunches of small berries. 10% wild fermented in barrel, blended with the stainless component. Very young, still quite tanky and pear-droppy at first, lemon jelly and pear, a touch of the flinty reduction. Lovely orange and lime zest and punchy acidity, fresh, fruity and long. No UK retail stockist listed at time of review.
(2020) From one of Forrest's hottest sites, giving the more exotic fruit profile. This is made in steel, cool salty and mineral notes, green notes, tight greengage, but moving into a more peachy character. There’s a fine saltiness to the acidity, giving a savoury character, juiciness too, long and mouthwatering.
(2020) From a vineyard planted in the 1980s. Very nice melon and stone fruit notes, a lovey full texture, clear apple and pear juice flavours, crackling lemon zest and sour, pithy grapefruit acid quality.
(2020) Basket pressed, this offers lots of clean, fresh, orchard fruit and stone fruits, and has the salty touch of minerality that gives complexity and freshness. No UK stockists listed at time of review.