Sauvignon Blanc is a dry and crisp wine that has its origins in the Loire Valley and Bordeaux regions of France. Sauvignon Blanc grapes thrive in warm but not overwhelming hot regions; as a result, a large quantity of the grape is grown in temperate regions such as South Africa, Australia, California, and France.
Arguably the most unique thing about the taste of Sauvignon Blanc is its “green” flavors. Sauvignon Blanc wines tend to have a strong hint of herbaceous and plant-like aromas similar to those found in green peppers, jalapeños, grass, and nettles. This gives Sauvignon Blanc a taste unique among other white wines and is an important aspect of its appeal. Alongside the fascinating herbal notes, Sauvignon Blanc is also packed with wonderful fruit flavors such as lime, tart apple, peach, and passion fruit.
Sauvignon Blanc is a particularly dry white wine and definitely not the best choice for those who appreciate the sweeter things in life. Alongside the dryness is a fairly high level of acidity, which can give less refined bottles of Sauvignon Blanc a certain mouth-puckering quality.
As it’s a fairly herbal wine, Sauvignon Blanc goes especially well with dishes that utilise fresh herbs. Try serving the wine with dishes that make liberal use of herbs such as basil, tarragon, cilantro, rosemary, and thyme. Garlic and herb chicken is a perfect dish to start out with but any white meat or seafood will do. Sauvignon Blanc is also one of the few wines that pair well with sushi!
Sauvignon Blanc and goats cheese are a classic pairing. In particular, cheese from the Loire Valley is considered the perfect pairing for this wine.
Wines to try
Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc ($30)
Herbal and fresh with a beautifully balanced finish.
Pascal Jolivet Sancerre Blanc ($25)
Less herbal than some other Sauvignon Blancs, this wine is refreshing and elegant.
Merry Edwards Sauvignon Blanc ($36)
Smooth and surprisingly rich. This wine has a wonderful blend of tropical fruit notes.