These wines were provided as media samples. I received no other compensation. Thoughts and opinions are my own.
The temps in Texas were still in the 80s in November. In fact, they hit 80 again last week…a few days before it snowed. The lesson being you always need to have a variety of jackets and wines on hand.
Two samples I tried recently were from New Zealand. Well, sort of. The grapes were from New Zealand. The winemakers were not.
When it comes to Monday wines, you’d be hard pressed to find a grape that does better at that price point ($8-14). Matua Sauvignon Blanc ($12) is no exception. the Marlborough region is synonymous with the grape and for good reason. They chose grapes from over 100 vineyards, from Wairau Valley to Awatere Valley for their varying characteristics. The wine is lively with tropical notes, grapefruit rind, and hints of green. Lemongrass came to mind. Abounding with minerality, it is an ideal quaff for hot afternoons or as an apertiv.
Dave Phinney looked to the same valleys to make his New Zealand wine for the Locations line. He sought the passion fruit and grassy notes from the Wairau, the minerality form Awatere, and the Waihopai for its gravel soils. With the varied vineyards, Phinney makes a unique, elegant take on New Zealand’s flagship grape. Pale yellow in the glass, the nose is classic gooseberry and tropical. On the palate, the notes are softer. Pink grapefruit, white flowers, candied lemon peel. While the price point is slightly higher that most at around $20, it is money well spent.