Sacred Hill ‘Sauvage’ Sauvignon Blanc 2011

The alternative Sauvignon Blanc style has become of critical importance. While there is no doubting the world-wide success of fresh, relatively uncomplicated, herbaceous-flavoured Sauvignon Blanc, mainly from Marlborough, producers here and sophisticated consumers realise that there must be different and more complex styles of the grape and wine to provide a counterpoint of interest. A number of excellent examples have a fine track record; the likes of Cloudy Bay ‘Te Koko’, Dogpoint ‘Section 94’ are key Marlborough examples.

The North Island has an advantage in producing superior ‘alternative Sauvignon Blancs, due to the different climate and warmer sites. From Hawke’s Bay, the Te Mata ‘Cape Crest’ and Sacred Hill ‘Sauvage’ stand out. The latter wine was the result of Sacred Hill owners Mark and David Mason being challenged to make a Graves-styled dry white Bordeaux facsimile following a visit to the region in the early 1990s. Using native ‘wild yeasts’ they created a quality wine they named ‘Sauvage’, which in French means ‘wild’. The first vintage was in 1992Here, I review the 2011 Sacred Hill ‘Sauvage’, now with some bottle age.


  • Sacred Hill ‘Sauvage’ Hawke’s Bay Sauvignon Blanc 2011

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