The Sauvignon Blanc grape can have grassy and vegetal to citrus and tropical fruit characteristics. It is important that this varietal receives enough sunlight to fully ripen. Sauvignon Blanc vines grow quickly and foliage management is often necessary. This is important to produce wines with sufficient flavor concentration.
California Sauvignon Blanc is right at home in many regions in the Golden State. These include Napa, Sonoma, Mendocino, and Livermore to name just a few. Sauvignon Blanc’s flavor and aroma profile vary greatly based on the characteristics of local vineyards. For example, the grapes have herbaceous, vegetal notes in the cooler Carneros wine region and tropical fruit and melon characteristics in the warmer Oakville wine region.
Sauvignon Blanc has historically been made in a dry style in Graves and the Loire Valley. The grape is planted all over Europe, but is concentrated in France. The Loire Valley, Bordeaux and Languedoc-Roussillon all have major Sauvignon Blanc plantings. It also does well in Northern Italy, the Balkans and Eastern Europe.
The Island of New Zealand has arguably been the leader in producing Sauvignon Blanc wine over the past couple decades. Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc is widely thought of as the benchmark for the varietal. These wines are vibrant and pure with flavors of gooseberries, passion fruit, pepper, and citrus.