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locations new zealandThis is another in Dave Phinney’s series of wines intended to call attention to their origin, using contracts with carefully selected growers in canonical wine regions of the world to make wines that bear the distinctive mark of that region. These are not vineyard designate or appellation-specific wines. For the most part this project treats larger areas, nations or states (in the U.S.), as the relevant geographical distinction. This Sauvignon Blanc is a blend of grapes from Wairau, Awatere and Waihopai Valleys in New Zealand, allowing Phinney to work as a painter might with a color palate selecting how much of each flavor profile to include in the blend. The result should be a Sauvignon Blanc that screams New Zealand.

Intense aromas of gooseberry, passion fruit, and tangerine with hints of fresh asparagus, this is more fruity and tropical than grassy, a distinctively New Zealand-style nose. The palate opens with a luscious mouthfeel, a creamy display of peach and tangerine, but assertive acidity and a stealthy influx of minerality give it a flinty finish although the tropical fruit essence never wholly leaves the stage. An endearing, generous wine that develops an edge as the finish builds, an inclement warning drifting on a fresh breeze.

The music must be tropical, hot and percussive, reaching back for Gloria Estefan’s Conga to match this wine’s freshness and intensity.

Score: 90

Price: 19.99 (Purchase Here)

Alc: 13.5%

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