“Beauty is for the artist something outside all orders of rank, because in beauty opposites are tamed; the highest sign of power, namely power over opposites; moreover, without tension: – that violence is no longer needed: that everything follows, obeys, so easily and so pleasantly – that is what delights the artist’s WILL TO POWER.”
― Friedrich Nietzsche, The Will to Power
Power over opposites delights fans of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc as well. In the 1980’s, New Zealanders figured out how to get this grape to express both the grassy, herbaceous quality of Loire Valley Sauvignon Blanc combined with California fruitiness—a true unity of opposites. Sauvignon Blanc is a grape too often ignored perhaps because American versions suffer from a kind of identity crisis. California versions can be all over the map, from full- bodied, oaked fume blanc to light, insipid one dimensional quaffers. But in New Zealand they know exactly what to aim for–pungent asparagus over grapefruit, and even the relatively inexpensive brands consistently hit the mark.
Citrus and fresh, raw asparagus set off by light floral notes give this Spy Valley a classic nose. The palate is grapefruit and lime wrapped in the vibrant acidity we expect from this grape. There is a faint hint of sweetness and none of the green, grassy flavors characteristic of styles that draw inspiration from the French—this strives for new world accessibility. Light on the palate, for those of us still baking in end-of-the-summer heat it is great refreshment.
Spy Valley lacks the powerful aromatics and the kinetic vigor of the best Kiwi Sauv blancs but at this price it satisfies.