2017 Brancott Estate Sauvignon Blanc, Marlborough, New Zealand
Brancott Estate is without a doubt, the biggest wine producer in New Zealand, and this is their main product with their ‘entry-level’ Sauvignon Blanc. Whether that’s a good thing or a bad thing, these guys must know what they’re talking about when they make Sauvignon Blanc because they make a lot of it.
In fact, Brancott (formerly Montana) planted the first commercial vineyards of the grape variety in Marlborough in 1973. Now the Chief Winemaker there is Patrick Materman, who joined the winery in February 1990.
2017 vintage was quite a challenging one in New Zealand and Marlborough, with unusually-high amounts of rain throughout the season creating difficult ripening conditions for the grapes.
So, how good is 2017 Brancott Estate Sauvignon Blanc?
This classic Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc comes in a bright and shiny lemon-yellow color, of medium intensity, but not pale. Neither is it much green in this aspect. Really, medium. Classic indeed for the style in its appearance.
The nose is bursting in grapefruit and passion fruit aromas, with plenty of lime and zesty lemon notes as well. It smells fresh and vibrant, in a pungent abundance of slightly grassy citrus peel, lime, and sweaty passion-fruit-dominated profile.
Add some hints of white pepper for some spiciness, and perhaps a touch of sour dough for further savory feel to the nose. Punchy, fruity, in-your-face you could probably say, to smell at. Yet, it feels rounded and generous enough to appear balanced to the nose, helped in that by solid pear-like esters, and touches of acacia honey.
The palate, straight away, feels round and balanced too. Oh, yes of course, it’s crisp and zesty, with a solid acidity that underlines the punchy lime, grapefruit and passion fruit flavors. It’s a Kiwi Sauv Blanc after all!
But discrete sugars do their job, backed up by a slightly oily texture, to provide a smooth refreshing impression.
A Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc packed-full with intense fruit characters. It is so pungent and exuberant! A clear reminder that, – almost a statement – the Marlborough region of New Zealand only can deliver such punchy, and aromatically opulent grassy and citrusy wines.
Clearly, this is a very well-made wine. If you’re fond of the style, you won’t be disappointed. Brancott’ Sauv Blanc delivers everything you expect from a vibrant Kiwi Sav at a relatively affordable price.
If you’re not familiar with this style yet, this is an approachable way to discover it and explore further whether you like the classic flavors of Marlborough or not !?!