2015 Villa Maria "Private Bin" Sauvignon Blanc Marlborough (Elsewhere $13+)

SKU #1235590 91 points Bob Campbell

 A blend of grapes from the Wairau and Awatere Valleys. One of the first examples of 2015 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc I have tasted. If it is typical of the vintage then it appears to have been an excellent year. A smaller than usual crop might explain greater than usual concentration in this wine. Citrus, grapefruit, melon and a hint of passion fruit supported by juicy acidity. Good value at this price.  (7/2015)

91 points Wine Enthusiast

 Pale, bright yellow. Pungent peppery lift to the aromas of lemon oil, fresh herbs and tropical fruit. Ripe nectarine, passion fruit and spice flavors convey a generous texture and enticing sweetness, but harmonious acidity gives the pliant middle palate good grip. An element of crushed herbs adds complexity. Finishes brisk and long, with an impression of salty extract. Excellent stuffing here: I like this style. (JC)  (12/2016)

90 points Wine Spectator

 Light and crisp, with tangy lime, melon and peach flavors that are succulent and smooth, finishing juicy, with plenty of focus and intensity. Drink now.  (7/2016)

K&L Notes

In a world flooded with Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc Villa Maria is one of my stalwarts of value and quality. Villa Maria is one of New Zealand's most successful and highly awarded wineries. For me the real point of difference with Villa Maria is that they are an authentic producer with great estate vineyards and top notch viticulture and winemaking teams. So many of the big brands rely on buying cheap bulk wine and then applying a catchy label. Villa on the other hand farms the soil, tends the vines, makes the wines and thus controls the quality from vineyard to glass. This allows them to make what I think is a perennial Top Value NZ Sauv Blanc. (Ryan Woodhouse - K&L NZ Wine Buyer)

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Price: $9.99
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Staff Image By: Stephanie Vidales | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/14/2016 | Send Email
What a beautiful New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc that is inexpensive enough for every day drinking! This wine has concentrated tropical notes of pineapple and passionfruit along with melon flavors and citrus. Juicy with pleasant acidity, this wine will quickly be your go-to white wine for spring and summer.

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Sauvignon Blanc

- One of the best known "international" varieties originally cultivated in France and considered the parent of, with Cabernet Franc, Cabernet Sauvignon. Sauvignon's wonderfully distinctive aromatics generate some of wine's most colorful descriptors, among them "cat pee," herbaceous, grassy, citrusy the world over. In France, the apex of Sauvignon Blanc production is the Loire Valley, in the appellations of Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé, where the terroir expresses itself most beautifully through the grape. Sauvignon Blanc is also the leading white grape varietal in Bordeaux, where it is paired with the fatter, richer Sémillon to varying degrees. Relatively easy to cultivate, though more suited to cool climates, Sauvignon Blanc has made inroads in Europe outside of France, especially in Northeastern Italy's Friuli and Alto Adige, but also on the Slovenian border. These lovely wines are often overshadowed by Sauvignon Blanc's achievements in the New World, namely New Zealand, South Africa and California. New Zealand's Sauvignon Blancs, more conspicuously fruity than most French examples, landed the small island nation on the world wine map in the late-1980s and 1990s. South African Sauvignons are one of the most successful international varieties produced in that country and are often quite elegant and affordable. In California, Robert Mondavi managed to, almost single-handedly, created a market for Sauvignon Blanc by renaming his oak-fermented version Fumé Blanc. While some wineries still use the name, California Sauvignon Blanc has secured its place in the California wine pantheon, particularly those from the Napa Valley. Washington State, Chile and Argentina also have considerable plantings of the grape.

New Zealand

- New Zealand is an extremely diverse wine-growing nation. The long history of producing wine started in the 1830s with wineries such as Mission Estate (1850) and Te Mata Estate (1896) still producing wine today. The two islands hold a multitude of different growing climates ranging from warmer areas such as Hawke’s Bay to very cool regions such as Waitaki, and Awatere. Most regions are defined as Maritime with the exception being Central Otago that has a moderate Continental climate with the high elevation creating dramatic diurnal swings in temperature. The plethora of grapes grown in New Zealand reflects this diverse microclimate make up. Everything has a place here, Bordeaux varietals and Syrah in Hawke’s Bay, Chardonnay and Pinot in Nelson, Pinot Noir and Riesling in Central Otago , aromatic whites in Waipara and pretty much everything you can imagine in Marlborough. New Zealand is also one of the “greenest” wine producing nations on earth (94% of wine certified sustainable in 2013) with a strong focus on organic and Biodynamic farming.