Wine note – June 2024

2021 Villa Maria Single Vineyard Taylors Pass Sauvignon Blanc (Asda £16.00)

A cool summer calls for a cool climate wine. New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc is the obvious choice but which one?

Supermarkets are full of bottles bearing the names of coves, rivers, hills, and bays that you’ve never of heard of. So, try this bottle from a famous producer, Villa Maria, and from a single vineyard, Taylors Pass, on the Awatere river. (There’s an area close by called Taylor Pass; I have no idea why the wine has gained an ‘s’.)

Yes, it costs more than the standard brands but it’s worth it. You get the usual gooseberry aromas but in a subtle way. The palate is rich but very well-balanced by the acidity. There’s a texture of minerals and a long finish.

It would work well in the garden as an aperitif but realistically you might have to drink it indoors with the heating turned up. Try it with risotto, seafood or fish and chips.

John Freeland (u3a Wine Tasting Group)