New Zealand is a relative newcomer to the ranks of winemaking nations, known particularly for sauvignon blancs that offer a delicious exception to the rule. Generally speaking, wines from Europe tend to be lighter in weight, earthier, and more tart, while those from the Americas and the southern hemisphere tend to be heavier, fruitier, and less acidic. However, New Zealand breaks that mold with
wines that are quite light and tangy, yet squeaky clean and overtly fruity in flavor. Why? These islands in the South Pacific may be drenched in sunshine but they are also surrounded by frigid ocean currents, an uncommon combination that yields mouthwatering results — zesty, lightweight wines that feature bold flavors of tropical fruits and cleansing scents of green herbs. This delightful example offers a diverse array of fruit aromas, from lime and grapefruit to kiwi and passion fruit, along with leafy green aromatics reminiscent of lemongrass and parsley.
Villa Maria Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand, $12.99 (Sale price through may 28, 2017; regularly $16.99), PLCB Item #6594.