Tasting Notes: Starborough Sauvignon Blanc

Guys, it's almost JUNE. Where did the year go?! How is it already (almost) summer time? Some of you may be excited for the new season and others are likely in mild shock like I am. While I can't believe it, the weather outside is forcing me to come to terms. We've been lucky enough to get some beautiful days recently, but I've already felt the heat and the summer storms have been around all week. What's a plus side to the warmer days? Getting to enjoy some chilled white wines! 

The Facts

  • Producer: Starborough
  • Region: Marlborough, New Zealand
  • Vintage: 2016
  • Variety: Sauvignon Blanc
  • Where I purchased: Grocery Store -  Harris Teeter. You can also find it at Total Wine. 
  • Price: $10.99
Starborough Sauv Blanc
  • Eyes: First off, I thought the label was pretty cool. I try not to choose a wine based on the label because I think they can be very deceptive, but I do like this one. Sauvignon Blancs have some of the best labels in my opinion because they're usually bright and fun. Anyway, I digress. You can kind of tell from the picture above, but once I poured a glass, this wine is so pale that it's almost white or clear. 
     
  • Nose: Smells just like what you would expect from a New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc! It smells citrusy, and I specifically think it smells like grapefruit. There's a hint of that herbal, grassy smell that often accompany wines from this area. I also got a slight whiff of peach, but citrus was front and center. Bottom line is it smelled good! 
     
  • Mouth: Crisp, light, refreshing. Exactly what we were looking for! The citrus notes came through, but wasn't overpoweringly acidic. It was super easy to drink and perfect for those who want that zing of an acidic white. I desperately want to say "gooseberry" because everyone always uses that descriptor for Sauvignon Blanc from Marlborough, but I have no idea what that tastes like. I might as well be this guy. Gooseberries, you elude me for now, but I'll find you some day.
     
  • Thoughts: If you like Sauvignon Blancs, this one is a great choice because it is a classic example of the wine from Marlborough. It's affordable, tasty, and would be perfect for a drink on the patio during a warm summer's evening or paired with a light afternoon picnic (hello, screwtop!). Kevin and I actually bought it to make this chicken piccata recipe, and it paired very well with the lemon and parsley in the dish (don't judge my amount of pasta). This type of Sauvignon Blanc would go well with any poultry (avoid the cream sauce, though) and would go especially well with veggies. Also, just a random thing to note, 2016 was apparently a very good vintage for New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc, so keep that in mind while shopping!

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Tasting Notes: Hugues Beauvignac Picpoul de Pinet

Kevin and I were lucky enough to receive a couple of giftcards to Total Wine for our wedding, and we just so happened to come across one a few weeks back. I thought it would be a great opportunity to stock up on some inexpensive, every day wines since our stash of mid-priced wines seemed to be growing due to all the tastings we've done recently. I also wanted to pick up some new whites because we've both been trying to expand our palate. I had heard of Picpoul as being a great summer wine and I came across this bottle in the France section of the store. Since French wines have been my favorite recently, I thought why not?!

The Facts

  • Producer: Hugues de Beauvignac
  • Region: Languedoc-Roussillon region of France
  • Vintage: 2014
  • Variety: Picpoul de Pinet
  • Where I purchased: Total Wine
  • Price: $11.99
  • Eyes: This wine was a pale yellow color with maybe a hint of green. Not sure if my eyes were playing a trick on me based on the bottle color, but it was pretty typical of what I would expect of a light-bodied white that would be refreshing in the summer.
     
  • Nose: This wine smelled great and like summer. Citrus, specifically lime and maybe some grapefruit, and minerals. Picpoul is often compared to Sauvignon Blanc, and while this one had citrus aromas, it was not as potent as a Sauvignon Blanc.
     
  • Mouth: We chilled this wine pretty well, and my first thought was "refreshing". That seems to be the buzzword of the summer, but I'm okay with it! It was light-bodied and the citrus flavors came through as well. Good acidity... not too acidic where it stung or too flabby either.
     
  • Thoughts: We both really enjoyed this wine and thought it paired especially well with our dinner, which was spicy shrimp with sauteed kale and parmesan quinoa. The recipe was easy and DELICIOUS, and you can find it here. I wanted a white to pair with the shrimp, and with spicy foods, you want a low alcohol wine since alcohol heightens the spicy sensation. I looked at my whites on stash, and this one came in the lowest at 12.5% ABV. The milder citrus flavor (when compared to Sauvignon Blanc) and the hint of minerals made this a great pairing with various aspects of dinner. This wine also has a screw cap which makes it perfect for taking to a BBQ or picnic!

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