Considered to be the ‘Mother’ of Cabernet Sauvignon, Sauvignon Blanc is indigenous to the Bordeaux region in France. Although Sauvignon Blanc is still used to produce high-quality wines in France, it is from regions in the New World, particularly New Zealand, where “Savvy B” has had the biggest impact.
In its home of Bordeaux, Sauvignon Blanc is produced as a dry wine in regions such as Graves and Pessac-Leognan, and as a sweet, late-harvest wine with Semillon in Sauternes. Further North, in the Loire Valley, Sauvignon Blanc is grown to great success in regions such as Touraine, Pouilly and Sancerre. The wines from the Loire, tend to be lighter and more mineral-driven than the fruitier styles of Bordeaux.
While the French wines made from Sauvignon display minerality and elegance, the wines from New Zealand are all about intensity and power. Marlborough is probably the most dominant Sauvignon Blanc producing region in NZ, and the wines show tropical fruit notes of passionfruit and guava, together with strong grassy, herbaceous characters. Regions such as the Adelaide Hills (S.A.) and the Margaret River in Western Australia, produce Sauvignon Blanc which tends to be less aggressive than the Marlborough style, but still showing vibrant tropical fruit notes. These wines pair very well with fresh seafood.