It seems that since National Wine Day started in 2009, more and more wine appreciation days are popping up in the calendar, which for us means more excuses to drink wine and celebrate! Thanks to its incredible success in New Zealand, this Friday, May 1st, 2020, we get to join in the festivities and cheers our glasses for National Sauvignon Blanc Day.
Why Celebrate National Sauvignon Blanc Day?
In effort to bring awareness and praise to the most popular New Zealand wine, responsible for 85% of their wine exports, Sauvignon Blanc Day was born in 2011. The wine holiday is to be celebrated on the first Friday in May each year. Sauvignon Blanc originated in Bordeaux, France, but when vines of the grape were planted in New Zealand in 1973, no one could have predicted the success they would have. Within a few decades, New Zealand’s Sauvignon Blanc became the global benchmark for the style and their flagship wine.
What makes New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc Different?
Similar to how the French term terroir acknowledges the influence of climate, soil, and winemaking, in order to produce unique characteristics in a wine, New Zealand winemakers have provided their own term. Tūrangawaewae (too-runguh-why-why) is the Māori word for “my place.” The term is used to describe the unique New Zealand approach to winemaking that includes terroir, but also embraces the history and spirit of a place that the people call home. As a whole, tūrangawaewae expresses connectedness and belonging to the land, which separates itself from all the others.
Marlborough: the Heartland of New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc
Although grown throughout 11 wine regions in New Zealand, the Sauvignon Blanc celebration began at the heart of the wine country in Marlborough. Marlborough is a unique region full of complexity, color, and diversity, located on the northern tip of the south island of New Zealand. The long and stable cool-climate growing season in Marlborough fills this style of Sauvignon Blanc with remarkable aromas, unique fruit characteristics, and extraordinary flavors that can only be produced in this environment. Hence why Marlborough accounts for over 60% of all wine produced in New Zealand.
The Tastes of New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs
Sauvignon Blanc from the south island of New Zealand, specifically Marlborough, emits intense aromas of passion fruit, gooseberry, and tropical overtones, as well as grapefruit, lime, and fresh cut grass. The wine is crisp, light-bodied, and highly acidic with a vibrant tropical fruit flavor and slight sweetness. North Island Sauvignon Blancs are riper, fruity styles that give off flavors of nectarine and peach. This flavor difference is a result of the climate difference since the north island is warmer and the south island is cooler.
How to Celebrate Sauvignon Blanc Day This Year
This year due to the circumstances with the coronavirus, New Zealand can’t host a wine celebration in person. However, there is an online celebration for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc fans on https://nzwine.com. Grab a bottle of your favorite New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc or any Sauvignon Blanc in our Wine Store and join the online festivities. If you want to enjoy your wine with food, pair it with seafood, shellfish, fish, or anything with a garlic or citrus-based sauce to enhance all the wines flavors.
Have fun, drink up, and Happy Sauvignon Blanc Day. Until the next wine holiday, cheers!
Need Some Suggestions?
Here are a few Sauvignon Blanc wines we've featured in our wine clubs to celebrate with!
Chesterfield 2018 Sauvignon Blanc
Babcock 2017 "Soulstruck" Sauvignon Blanc
Cache Creek 2016 Sauvignon Blanc
Valle de Inez 2017 Sauvignon Blanc