Wine Club

POSTED BY

Julia Crowley

ABOUT

The official Wine Julia, the glassware snob, the lover of Grüner Veltliner, Pinot Noir, and Oregon Sparkling Wine - our Media and Communications Manager

POSTED BY

Julia Crowley

ABOUT

The official Wine Julia, the glassware snob, the lover of Grüner Veltliner, Pinot Noir, and Oregon Sparkling Wine - our Media and Communications Manager

LATEST POSTS

April 13, 2021
May Club Release Wines
March 1, 2021
Welcome, Wine Casualists
February 24, 2021
Pairing Wine with Winter’s Best Miniseries
February 19, 2021
Bivalves & Bubbles
February 18, 2021
Get To Know Sauvignon Blanc
September 22, 2020
Wine Blending Party

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February 18, 2021

Get To Know Sauvignon Blanc

The Wild White Wine of the World

Sauvignon Blanc’s name translates to ‘Wild White’ or ‘Savage White,’ referring to the varietal’s vigorous and wild-growing vines which require a lot of hands-on attention in the vineyard. Originally hailing from either the Bordeaux region or the Loire Valley region of France, Sauvignon Blanc is one of the most widely planted white wine grapes in the world. Because of this, it may be labeled with a different name, depending on which region it’s from. In Bordeaux, it’s referred to as White Bordeaux or Bordeaux Blanc, and in France’s Loire Valley, it’s called Sancerre – the name of the village where the grapes are grown. In Austria, it’ll likely be labeled Muskat-Silvaner, in Germany it’s Feigentraube, and in Italy, it’s just Sauvignon. In the USA, Sauvignon Blanc from California is often called Fume Blanc, but we keep it simple here in Oregon and call it Sauvignon Blanc

Freshly harvested 2020 Sauvignon Blanc resting on the crush pad at Sweet Cheeks Winery just minutes before getting pressed
Freshly harvested 2020 Sauvignon Blanc resting on the crush pad at Sweet Cheeks Winery just minutes before getting pressed

Different regions boast different characteristics

Depending on the climate, Sauvignon Blanc’s characteristics can vary greatly from one region to another, offering a full spectrum of flavors and styles. In cooler climates, Sauvignon Blanc produces crisp, dry, and refreshing wines that offer zesty lime, green apple, passionfruit, and white peach characteristics that are highlighted by herbaceous notes of cut-grass, green nettles, green pepper, and sometimes even jalapeno. In moderate to warmer climates, characteristics will display more tropical notes such as guava and pineapple. However, the best and most revered Sauvignon Blancs come from the cooler climate regions, one of the reasons why it grows so remarkably well here in Oregon. Oregon’s Sauvignon Blancs do, in fact, take on the typical cooler climate characteristics (and oftentimes tropical notes are also noted), but there’s also a very distinctive saline (aka sea salt or salty sea spray) nuance that makes Oregon Sauvignon Blancs outstanding.

Our best yet Sauvignon Blanc

At Sweet Cheeks Winery, recent releases of our Sauvignon Blanc have been a huge hit, and the 2020 vintage Sauvignon Blanc is one of the best yet. We don’t grow the Sauvignon Blanc varietal on our estate vineyard, so Leo (our winemaker) sources the fruit from other Oregon vineyards that he works closely with. With a portion of the fruit sourced from Quail Run Vineyards in the Rogue Valley and the remainder from Parker Vineyard in the Umpqua Valley, Leo was sure to get extra amounts of fruit this round. Our last release of Sauvignon Blanc sold out rather quickly, so he wanted to make sure we had more to offer our fans this round.

Bright, zesty and refreshing

Each vineyards’ fruit brings in different components, giving the wine a really nice depth and complexity; one adds super fruity characters while the other adds bright, zippy acidity, making for a really well-balanced wine. In line with what one would expect with Oregon fruit, our Sauvignon Blanc is fruit-forward. Vibrant aromas and crisp flavors of green melon, freshly sliced pear, and lime verbena herb are highlighted by mineral-driven notes of salty sea spray. A mid-palate hint of zesty jalapeno is joined with racy acidity that follows through to a perpetually bright and juicy finish that’s well balanced and super refreshing. 

Bright, juicy, well balanced and refreshing. Our 2020 Sauvignon Blanc is super fruit forward with distinctive mineral notes and racy acidity.
Bright, juicy, well balanced and refreshing. Our 2020 Sauvignon Blanc is super fruit forward with distinctive mineral notes and racy acidity.

What to pair with our 2020 Sauvignon Blanc

The crisp and refreshing acidity of Sauvignon Blanc beautifully compliments a myriad of dishes; particularly, seafood, shellfish, poultry and spicy foods. Acidity cuts through fat, so Sauvignon Blanc can easily stand up to rich, fatty meals. Because of the wine’s herbaceous qualities, some of its quintessential food pairings include meals that are loaded up with herbs like rosemary, basil, cilantro, parsley, mint, sage and more. For an outstanding recipe that pairs perfectly with our 2020 Sauvignon Blanc, check out this classic Butternut Squash Bisque recipe here. 

Enjoy these little-known Sauvignon Blanc fun facts: 

  • Sauvignon Blanc is the ‘mother’ of Cabernet Sauvignon (Cabernet Franc is the ‘father’)
  • Sauvignon Blanc is a Noble Grape – a term used to classify the grape varieties that are known to produce the best wines in the world
  • Sauvignon Blanc is one of the few wines that pair well with sushi
  • Sauvignon Blanc is one of the first wines (along with Riesling) to be bottled with a screw cap and sold in commercial quantities. 
  • There are over 275,000+ acres of Sauvignon Blanc planted worldwide
  • Sauvignon Blanc grows vigorously and is quite “wild” – requiring a lot of hands-on attention in the vineyard
  • Sauvignon” means “Wild” 
  • Sauvignon Blanc’s nickname is “Wild White Wine.”
  • Sauvignon Blanc will pair well with anything that requires a squeeze of lemon: Dungeness crab, shrimp, oysters, grilled fish, seafood platter and more.
  • International Sauvignon Blanc Day is celebrated on the first Friday of May.