Spy Valley ‘Easy Tiger’ Low Alcohol Sauvignon Blanc 2014

The low alcohol wine category is growing to the extent that New Zealand Winegrowers has committed funding into the research and development of the style. A number of wine producers have worked on their interpretations of making low alcohol Sauvignon Blanc for a number of years. The most successful wines have managed to retain proper fruit and flavour expression while retaining balance and vinosity. The main approaches are to employ fruit from sites that deliver flavour-ripe fruit at lower sugars than typical, and to balance the wine componentry of sugar and acidity. Most of the bottlings of low alcohol wines, especially with Sauvignon Blanc are made with very little inputs to preserve purity and clarity of flavour.

Spy Valley has entered the fray with their ‘Easy Tiger’ Sauvignon Blanc 2014. In spite of the name, winemakers Paul Bougeois and Kathy-Lee Sowman, and viticulturist Adam McCone have given serious thought to the making of the wine. Their approach has been to employ fruit from different blocks at various ripeness levels to provide a range of flavours, and eschew de-alcoholising, which can lead to imbalance. Some barrel fermentation and the significant use of MLF are some of the techniques employed. Here is my review of the wine. www.spyvalleywine.co.nz


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