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4 Wines & A Plate: Sauvignon Blanc

06.14.10

The following is a summary of our monthly wine tasting group evening. Wines are tasted blind [brown bagged], food is paired to the varietal, we score the wines, have some good fun talking about them, and unbag them at the end. More details in a Q&A here.

Sauvignon Blanc had been on the to-do list since last summer, so it was long overdue. For those red-wine-folks that don’t do whites, all I can say is that you’re missing out. [But don't start now. Low demand is good for ME - I can get dynamic, complex, interesting whites far more inexpensively than reds]. Sauv Blanc in particular is not for everybody. If you hate vegetal [esp green/chili pepper, grassy] vibes or a nice dose of acidity, you should tread carefully. If you like sweet whites, probably should look elsewhere. If you dig food wines, this may be for you.

This month was a bit odd, as I couldn’t buy a highly priced bottle of this varietal – simply wasn’t available. So I broke the usual rule and went with 7 wines ranging from $15-33. Average group score 82.6 – which is about normal from month to month.  Top wine received an average score of 88.3. And for the first time, the overall favorite wine was the cheapest. 2009 Casa Marin Matisses Sauvignon Blanc [91-92] from Chile won the day. It’s heavy on the green chilis, round, with a touch of mineral on the nose. It’s nicely balanced on the palate and overall stood up over the rest. Tied for second were 2007 Domaine Vacheron Sancerre with wet rock, musk, floral perfume, wicked fruit and honey on the nose and a light, elusive, tart, apricoty palate [88-89] and 2008 Casa Marin Cartagena Sauvignon Blanc – very mineral on the nose with green veg, and a sexy & impressive palate. [92 - a buy for me at $19]

So Chile ran away with this one – especially from a QPR perspective. They easily took out competition from Bordeaux, the lesser known Loire appellation of Cheverny, New Zealand, and South Africa. I tend to have a pretty heavy bias to old world wines, so it’s nice to see more new world love entering my life.

THE FOOD

garden salad with Valencay goat cheese, bacon, eggs, etc.

poached trout with chive flower beurre noisette, baby dill, and tarragon-butter asparagus


rhubarb & custard with organic granola [great dish, poor pairing]

Valencay with home-made raspberry jam

3 Responses

  1. [...] 4 Wines & A Plate: Sauvignon Blanc « Kevin Kossowan [...]

  2. I finally tried the Valencay and St. Maure this week. They’re beautiful. Even with my rough palate, the taste of mushrooms is unmistakable.

    I’m so close to Old Strathcona that I rarely go to City Market, so it might have taken me years to stumble across Smoky Valley. Thanks for the recommendation.

  3. [...] – I'm test-running a new source of local poultry. And there was some spare Sauvignon Blanc from Friday's wine tasting. Add some cool mushrooms I picked up at the Saturday Market from Mo-Na. My garden offered some wild [...]

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