Marlborough, New Zealand
41º5'S 174 ºE
The Marlborough region on the north-eastern coast of New Zealand's south island is undoubtedly the most famed area for producing stunning Sauvignon Blancs. New Zealand also has the distinction of having the southern most vineyards; though latitudinally, the area is similar to central Italy with a climate much like Burgundy, France. The weather in Marlborough is perfect for the thin-skinned Sauvignon Blanc grapes, which profit from the long, mild days and the low annual rainfall.
Marlborough was first planted with Sauvignon Blanc vines in the early 1970s and, within twenty years, the grape became the premiere wine of the region, making up a quarter of all New Zealand wines. The vineyards here are sheltered from the winds and are planted in now-dry river beds, offering the vines a fast-draining and healthy soil. The rate of popularity growth for these wines is unmatched as they have swept the international market creating a niche as the pinnacle of the varietal.
The long, mild growing season allows the Sauvignon Blanc grapes to reach their potential for full and crisp fruit flavors. Marked by a zesty and provocative taste, the wines maintain a feel of freshness. The powerful and acute whole fruit flavors are accompanied flawlessly by fresh herbs, passion or citrus fruits, gooseberries, and red peppers.