Allan Scott Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2001
Allan Scott is synonymous with wine in Marlborough: he has worked every harvest since 1973 and is credited with planting some of region’s most famous vineyards, including the very first. In 1990, Allan and his wife Catherine established Scott Family Winery as one of the first independent wineries of Marlborough. Since inception, the winery has produced wines consistent in flavor and quality year after year while continually evolving to keep ahead of the changing demand of the market. A true family affair, Allan and Catherine remain actively involved in all levels of production; their son Josh is the winemaker; and their daughters Sara and Victoria are the viticulturist and marketing manager, respectively. The Scott family attributes its success to excellent vineyard sites, hard work, superb conditions and a desire to produce the world’s best wines. With its distinctive combination of cool nights, sunny days, and young soils, Marlborough is recognized as one of the world’s greatest wine regions. Within Marlborough, the Rapaura area along the northern edge of the Wairau Valley has become particularly prized and is home to the family’s vineyards, all within close proximity to the winery. The vineyards are farmed using organic inputs, with minimal chemicals and energy. In 2006, the Scott Family Winery joined the Sustainable Winegrowers program and continues to follow its practices closely. The modern, fully-equipped winery specializes in the production of the aromatic varieties: Sauvignon Blanc, Riesling, Gewürztraminer, and Pinot Gris, which are perfectly suited to the gravelly soils that predominate in the vineyards. Chardonnay and Pinot Noir also thrive in the sunny Marlborough climate, contributing to the Scotts’ ever-growing reputation for traditionally made wines. As avid bubbles fans, the family proudly produces on site an impressive range of bubbles made in the méthode traditionnelle.
An icon and leading region of New Zealand's distinctive style of Sauvignon blanc, Marlborough has a unique terroir, making it ideal for high quality grape production (of many varieties). Despite some common generalizations, which could be fairly justified given that Marlborough is responsible for 90% of New Zealand's Sauvignon blanc production, the wines from this region are actually anything but homogenous. At the northern tip of New Zealand’s South Island, the vineyards of Marlborough benefit from well-draining, stony soils, a dry, sunny climate and wide temperature fluctuations between day and night, a phenomenon that supports a perfect balance between berry ripeness and acidity.
The region’s king variety, Sauvignon blanc, is beloved for its pungent, aromatic character with notes of exotic tropical fruit, freshly cut grass and green bell pepper along with a refreshing streak of stony minerality. These wines are made in a wide range of styles, and winemakers take advantage of various clones, vineyard sites, fermentation styles, lees-stirring and aging regimens to differentiate their bottlings, one from one another.
A crisp, refreshing variety that equally reflects both terroir and varietal character, Sauvignon Blanc is responsible for a vast array of wine styles. However, a couple of commonalities always exist—namely, zesty acidity and intense aromatics. The variety is of French provenance, and is most important in Bordeaux and the Loire Valley. It also shines in New Zealand, California, Australia and parts of northeastern Italy. Chile and South Africa are excellent sources of high-quality, value-priced Sauvignon Blanc.
Tasting Notes for Sauvignon Blanc
Sauvignon Blanc is a dry white wine. In its homeland, Bordeaux, winemakers prefer to blend it with Sémillon to produce a softer, richer style. In the Loire Valley, Sauvignon Blanc expresses citrus, flint and smoky flavors, especially from in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fumé. Marlborough, New Zealand often produces a pungent and racy version, reminiscent of cut grass, gooseberry and grapefruit. California's style is fruit-driven, in either a soft and oak-aged or snappy and fresh version.
Perfect Food Pairings for Sauvignon Blanc
The freshness of Sauvignon blanc’s flavor lends it to a range of light, summery dishes including salad, seafood and mild Asian cuisine. Sauvignon Blanc settles in comfortably at the table with notoriously difficult foods like artichokes or asparagus. When combined with Sémillon (and perhaps some oak), it matches well with complex seafood and chicken dishes.
Sommelier Secrets for Sauvignon Blanc
Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is a proud parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. That green bell pepper aroma that all three varieties share is no coincidence—it comes from a high concentration of pyrazines (herbaceous aromatic compounds) inherent to each member of the family.