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White Oak Sauvignon Blanc 2000
Born in Los Angeles, founder Bill Myers worked as a building contractor and salmon fisherman in Alaska. During the 1970's, Bill sold his boat and relocated to the bucolic town of Healdsburg, where he would purchase his first vineyard and trade fish for winemaking secrets.
With his newly purchased vineyard, a tiny tasting room and wine production facility just off the square in downtown Healdsburg, Bill started making wines under consultation of the highly respected MaryAnn Graf. He quickly became recognized for producing wonderful Sauvignon Blanc, Zinfandel and what was to become White Oak's flagship wine: Chardonnay.
In 1991, Bill took home first Sweepstakes Award from the prestigious Sonoma County Harvest Fair for his 1990 Sonoma County Chardonnay. Shortly after, an alliance with Don Groth and Burdell Properties brought 750 acres of prime vineyards across the Napa, Russian River & Alexander Valleys to White Oak. Presently, 10% of this fruit is used to produce White Oak wines with the balance sold to other prestige wineries.
October of 1998 celebrated the Grand Opening of the new Mediterranean-style Estate nestled in the heart of the renowned Alexander Valley, accommodating a larger production facility and national office space to meet the growing demands for the wine. The 17 acre Estate is also home to 12 acres of proprietary vineyards, including exclusive lots of Old Vine Zinfandel dating back to 1928 & 1935.
Today, White Oak has refined its selection of estate and premium wines designed to reflect founder Bill Myers' original vision of great wines suited to a range of tastes - from graceful, elegant whites to rich & complex reds.
One of the world's most highly regarded regions for wine production as well as tourism, the Napa Valley was responsible for bringing worldwide recognition to California winemaking. In the 1960s, a few key wine families settled the area and hedged their bets on the valley's world-class winemaking potential—and they were right.
The Napa wine industry really took off in the 1980s, when producers scooped up vineyard lands and planted vines throughout the county. A number of wineries emerged, and today Napa is home to hundreds of producers ranging from boutique to corporate. Cabernet Sauvignon is definitely the grape of choice here, with many winemakers also focusing on Bordeaux blends. Napa whites are usually Chardonnay and Sauvignon Blanc.
Within the Napa Valley lie many smaller sub-AVAs that claim specific characteristics based on situation, slope and soil. Farthest south and coolest from the influence of the San Pablo Bay is Carneros, followed by Coombsville to its northeast and then Yountville, Oakville and Rutherford. Above those are the warm St. Helena and the valley's newest and hottest AVA, Calistoga. These areas follow the valley floor and are known generally for creating rich, dense, complex and smooth reds with good aging potential. The mountain sub appellations, nestled on the slopes overlooking the valley AVAs, include Stags Leap District, Atlas Peak, Chiles Valley (farther east), Howell Mountain, Mt. Veeder, Spring Mountain District and Diamond Mountain District. Wines from the mountain regions are often more structured and firm, benefiting from a lot of time in the bottle to evolve and soften.
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 here 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.
In the Glass
From its homeland In Bordeaux, winemakers prefer to blend it with Sémillon to produce a softer, richer style. In the Loire Valley, it expresses citrus, flint and smoky flavors, especially from in Sancerre and Pouilly-Fume. Marlborough, New Zealand often produces a pungent and racy version, often reminiscent of cut grass, gooseberry and grapefruit. California produces fruity and rich oak-aged versions as well as snappy and fresh, Sauvignon blancs, which never see any oak.
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 can be paired with more complex seafood and chicken dishes.
Along with Cabernet Franc, Sauvignon Blanc is the 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 (an herbaceous aromatic compound) inherent to each member of the family.