2015 Saint Clair Pioneer Block 25 Point Five Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough
Local vines are getting every year older providing more mature flavors and depth. Winemakers know their terroir better than ever. More importantly (or not!?!), the climatic conditions of the vintage were perfectly warm and dry all season providing healthy fruit and plenty of time for wineries to pick at the very best moment for each block.
This vineyard and subsequent wine is named after its ‘altitude’: point five metres above sea level. That’s just over a foot and a half, not a wave big enough to carry a surfboard!
Saint Clair says that the low-lying site experiences cooler temperatures than other parts of the Marlborough region which results in a longer growing season and helps with developing intensity of flavours. This vineyard also has a nutrient- and mineral-rich soil with significant daytime-night time temperature difference because of its proximity to the cooling influence of the nearby Cloudy Bay.
But good how is this new Sauv Blanc wine really ?
The Answer is in the tasting notes:
Lightly-colored, pale yellow with a slight green hue.
A rather restrained and elegant nose for a Marlborough Sauv Blanc, playing on the nuances and subtleties of estery (pear & apricot) notes combined with powerfully-fruity passionfruit, and a touch of grassiness providing lightness and depth. The almost shy and nuanced aromatics leave room for a tempting minerality to shine.
The overall palate is dry. Both a crisp acidity and a touch of sweetness are perceptible but seem to neutralize and balance each other perfectly. They’re surrounded by a mid-body and rather oily texture coating the palate enjoyably. Flavors are fresh, tropical, and citrusy, with hints of light white pepper, hay, and rhubarb notes. Despite the wine’s prudent approach to your palate, the finish is long on exuberant passionfruit and grassy tones.
Overall: a very elegant, precise, lean, fresh, and crisp wine, packed with subtle nuances. Like a delicate and balanced lemon juice that would have gathered tropical and grassy aromas to complete its palette of flavors.
The overall citrus-like feel makes this wine a perfect partner for refined seafood dishes or Asian cuisine. Go subtle of the food match’s flavors to respect wine’s elegance and discretion.
Enjoyable to drink now, and within 2-3 years from now.