Hard to believe, but it was only 40 years ago that New Zealand's first sauvignon blanc was produced by brothers Ross and Bill Spence of Matua Valley, West Auckland.
Matua Marlborough Lands and Legends - 2013A classic tropical Marlborough sauvignon, mouth-clenching acidity with a wash of flavours and aromas that have made this varietal so popular worldwide. A wine reflecting Bill Spence's philosophy: "We want to make our wines with enjoyment top of mind."
Matua Single Vineyard Awatere Valley - 2013When the Spence brothers made their first sauvignon, in 1974, they had no idea how important this would be. "We didn't realise the impact it would have, and you could say we ultimately changed the way the world drinks white wine," says Bill. Forty years on he is still involved, as ambassador-at-large, with winemaker Nikolai St George at the helm. This wine is full of capsicum, grilled pineapple, mint, lemon and dry herbs.
Matua Hawkes Bay - 2013Sauvignon blanc from Hawkes Bay tends to be softer, with more of a citrus bite and often a more slightly chalky minerality.
Put that down to warmer conditions and an absence of the cooler nights you get in Marlborough. This wine has an elegant style, with expressive aromas of gooseberry and passionfruit.
Available at heraldwine.co.nz for a limited time, courtesy of Glengarry and GrabOne Bottle.
- John Hawkesby, Canvas Magazine