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In Good Taste

Introduction to Sauvignon Blanc

Introduction to Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc - The Wild White

Sauvignon Blanc is one of the most popular white wines available.  Loved by everyone from first-time wine drinkers to seasoned sommeliers, this easy-to-drink wine is famous for combining light and airy tasting notes of pear, grapefruit, lime, white peach with herbal qualities of cut grass, lemongrass, and bell pepper. 

History of Sauvignon Blanc

The name Sauvignon Blanc comes from the French words sauvage meaning “wild,” and blanc meaning “white.” The Sauvignon Blanc grape is said to have originated in the Loire Valley and Bordeaux Regions of western France, and surprisingly, it was considered a wild weed before farmers started turning the grapes into wine. 

History of Sauvignon Blanc

Brought to California in the 1880s and New Zealand in the 1970s, Sauvignon Blanc has grown in popularity ever since as white wine enthusiasts looked for a tasty alternative to Chardonnay. 

Is Sauvignon Blanc a Varietal Wine or a Wine Blend?

For the most part, Sauvignon Blanc stands on its own as a varietal wine. However, several Sauvignon Blanc grapes grown in the Pessac-Léognan region of Bordeaux, France, are commonly blended with heavier white wines like Chardonnay or Semillon to produce a fuller body and more balanced flavor profile. 

Sauvignon Blanc is a Varietal or Blend?

What Does Sauvignon Blanc Taste Like?

Sauvignon Blanc can have a wide range of aromas and tasting notes, from fresh-cut grass, peas, or asparagus to tropical tones like passion fruit or grapefruit. If the wine has a more herbaceous/grassy taste, that likely means its grapes were grown in a cooler climate or picked early from the vine. In either of these conditions, these grapes have a higher content of the chemical compound called pyrazine, which infuses the grapes with a flavor many people describe as “green.” (Never tasted something “green”? Sample a Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley, and you’ll see what we mean.). On the white wine sweetness chart, Sauvignon Blanc ranks in the “off-dry” category alongside Chardonnay, Pinot Gris, and Semillon.

Tasting Notes of Sauvignon Blanc Can Vary by Region

Flavor and Aroma Notes of Sauvignon Blanc Wine
Sauvignon Blanc tastes different when it comes from a warm region vs a cooler region

Sauvignon Blanc Around the World

Grapes grown in warmer climates or allowed to ripen longer on the vine have less pyrazine and feature fruitier tones. However, if the climate is too warm, the grapes can ripen too quickly, which lessens the intended flavor. 

The aging process for varietal Sauvignon Blanc is often completed using stainless steel, which preserves the wine’s natural flavor and acidity. But sometimes, when winemakers are feeling a little creative, they blend the Sauvignon Blanc with other white wines, fermenting and aging itin oak barrels to produce flavors of creme brulee, lemon curd, and butter. 

Sauvignon Blanc - Map of Growing Regions

While there isn't a drastic difference between Old World and New World Sauvignon Blancs, Old World varietals tend to be slightly earthier than the New World wines made in the United States. 

Most of the world’s Sauvignon Blanc is made in the following regions: 

Serving and Storing Sauvignon Blanc

Like most white wines, Sauvignon Blanc is best served chilled. About two hours in the refrigerator will bring it to the ideal temperature range of 50-55 degrees Fahrenheit. For faster results or outdoor events, an ice bucket for 30-40 minutes will do the job. 

If you’re saving some for later, keep your unfinished bottle in the fridge with a cork. It should keep its fresh flavor for up to four days, but after that, it will lose its flavor due to oxidation. 

How to Serve & Enjoy Sauvignon Blanc

Sauvignon Blanc is best served between 50-55 degrees F
Chill in the fridge for 2 hrs
Or chill in a bucket of ice for 30-40 minutes
Store opened bottles in the fridge with cork

What to Pair with Sauvignon Blanc 

If you’ve ever asked yourself, “what type of wine would go with this salad?” we have your answer. Sauvignon Blanc is known for pairing well with salads and raw, green vegetables like cucumbers, broccoli, and brussels sprouts. 

It also pairs nicely with shellfish, sushi, white fish, and creamy pasta dishes. Feeling adventurous? Pair it with Thai, Greek, and Mexican cuisine for a deliciously audacious meal.

Sauvignon Blanc vs. Chardonnay or Pinot Grigio

All popular white wines, Sauvignon Blanc, Chardonnay, and Pinot Grigio, have their own unique qualities that stand out from each other. 

Compared to unoaked Chardonnay, Sauvignon Blanc is more herbaceous and acidic. It’s also lighter and a bit sweeter than Chardonnay, although still considered dry. 

Compared to Pinot Grigio, Sauvignon Blanc is more aromatic and boasts a brighter taste. Pinot Grigio is softer with more notes of citrus, a flavor profile that makes it a better white wine selection for the beginner. 

Direct comparisons aside, it’s worth noting that most Chardonnay and Pinot Grigio drinkers are pleasantly surprised at how well they take to Sauvignon Blanc. If you’re not sure which of white wine is your favorite, try our Curated Wine Flights and see which you like best.


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Rosé of Sangiovese


Sangiovese can be found in both the Chianti and Montalcino regions of Tuscany (it all sounds so romantic, right?) and is known for producing classic medium-bodied wines. Rosé wine is actually made from red grapes, and this is where the Rosé of Sangiovese comes to play. Crisp, fruit-forward, and easy-to-drink, it's everything you want in your bottle of Rosé and more.



Big, bold, and full of flavor—exactly what you’d expect an Italian wine to be! This classic Italian grape produces some of Italy’s most straightforward red wines and is often used as a blending grape. Not here, though. We let Montepulciano do the heavy lifting as a heavy red wine and shine on its own. If you enjoy the smell of leather bound books, nibbling on dried fruit, and complementary notes of bitter, dark chocolate and sweet plums, you will love this Italian wine. No need to pair it with any certain dish—Montepulciano tastes great with all the Italian classics.

Cabernet Sauvignon


If Pinot Noir is the light and juicy queen of reds, Cabernet Sauvignon is her bolder, heavier, meatier sister. Often referred to as just “cab,” it’s the wine of France’s Bordeaux and California’s Napa Valley. There’s nothing subtle about Cabernet Sauvignon—high in alcohol, full-bodied and robust, you can usually find this red served with a ribeye, New York Strip, or filet mignon (re: carnivores love cab). Classic cabs usually offer tasting notes of chocolate, coffee, and darker fruits like prunes and plums. The Unprecedented Cabernet Sauvignon is as classic as they come, and we highly recommend letting the bottle sit and mellow until your next red meat and potatoes dinner!

Pinot Grigio

La Pluma

If you’re looking for more zest in your life, a bottle of Pinot Grigio can provide that. We included a classic Pinot Grigio in the La Pluma collection because we’re all about light and easy here, which is exactly what this grape from Italy is. It has that dry sense of humor that seems so effortless with a punchy acidity to keep you on your toes, all while offering notes of lemon, limes, green apples, and honeysuckle. Long story short; when it’s been a heavy day and your soul is seeking light things only, you’ll be happy to have this bottle on hand.

Pinot Noir


We couldn’t create the In Good Taste Unprecedented collection without the Golden Retriever of wines: Pinot Noir. Pinot is likable, it’s easy, and its natural state of being is simply charming. It’s an incredibly easy red wine to love, which is why so many people do. The grape itself is from the Burgundy region of France, but has made its way to California, Oregon, Australia, Italy, Argentina, and Germany since. Our Pinot Noir has no surprise twists—it’s a classic light red with just the right amount of sweetness to keep you coming back for another glass (or two).

Coteaux Bourguignons


The Burgundy region of France is home to their best Pinot Noirs, but we took the grapes into our own hands to create something extra special with our Coteaux Bourguignons. It’s a blend of Pinot Noir and Gamay, which results in a French red that’s light in body but full in flavor. The ripest blueberries and freshest herbs can be easily detected in this French burgundy blend. May we suggest pairing it with some creamy brie and freshly baked bread? It’s a oui-ning combo.



A little sweet. A little tart. A little salty? You truly get it all with this white Italian wine. If you're into that biting acidity, Verdicchio will probably be high on your list of most-loved wines from our Andiamo collection. Citrus fruits like mandarin, lemon, and grapefruit are at the forefront, but what really sets this Italian wine apart is its distinct notes of almond. While our Verdicchio can start out tasting a bit tart, the more you sip, the smoother it becomes. In fact, we suggest approaching it as an aperitif (Italian for an alcoholic drink sipped before a meal to stimulate the appetite) to experience its full effect.


Côtes du Rhône White


This was one of our first French wines to join the Passport collection and one sip will explain why. Some background on the Rhône Valley in France: While this region is known for its dark, juicy reds, a very small amount of special white wines are made in the Rhône Valley. Our Côtes du Rhône is packed with French-perfected, floral flavor and Old-World charm. Its natural tang paired with the weighty Marsanne grape and aromatic Roussanne grape results in a crisp, savory sip that’ll transport you to a sunbathing chair by the Rhône itself.


Bordeaux Rouge


When you picture medieval folk sitting around a feast with goblets of wine, chances are they were drinking Bordeaux. This wine has been made in France since forever and is arguably the most classic French wine out there. Bordeaux is known for its full body, smoky notes, and rich, oaky taste. If you love cabs, chances are you will adore Bordeaux. For our Passport wines, we had to include this classic French red for you to sip and enjoy to your heart’s content. Best savored over a rich meal like lamb ragu, ratatouille, or BBQ.


Ventoux Rosé


You probably know that the Tour de France is held on Ventoux Mountain in France, but did you know that the same area is known for its high-altitude rosé? This is the kind of quintessential French rosé that you don’t need to spin your wheels over—it’s simply delicious, crisp, and perfect for warm weather. Despite its delicate, pale pink color, each sip is lush with flavor, from tropical passionfruit and zesty citrus to refreshing melon. This has the potential to be your new summer go-to, so we’d suggest stocking up.



Wild Child

Say “¡Hola!” to Spain’s main grape: Tempranillo. This red grape put Rioja wine on the map and is un vino tinto classico. It’s best compared to a classic cab, but with a bit more unique magic that’s hard to put your finger on, which is why it’s a part of our Wild Child line. This medium- to full-bodied wine with its relatively higher tannins usually offers complex notes of cherry, fig, cedar, tobacco, and dill. This is the type of red wine you want to buy and pour for a Latin-infused meal; think carne asada, tacos al carbon, or just perfectly cooked steak fajita meat.


La Pluma

We knew the only red in the La Pluma collection had to be exceptionally good and exceptionally light. That’s why including a Grenache was a no-brainer. If smooth, fruit-forward, light-bodied reds appeal to your tastebuds, this could be your new favorite. The grape itself is tricky; depending on the climate of where its grown, Grenache wines could be light, dense, or somewhere in the middle. La Pluma’s version has all the airiness and flavor notes we wanted in our Grenache, which is how we know you’ll love it. Get the most of this red by pairing it with roasted meats, spice-heavy vegetables, and Mexican-inspired dishes with lots of cumin.




This grape goes by different names in most European countries, but what remains the same is its fruity floral nature. Delicate in every way and extremely quaffable, this wine is as dainty as they come.



We really try not to play favorites at In Good Taste, but there is just something about an Italian Barbera that hits different in the best way. Barberas are the perfect wine for pizza night; they're low in alcohol, and medium-bodied but taste super light, and their berry and plum flavors pair incredibly well with savory tomato sauce and cheese! Another fun thing about Barberas? They actually taste great when chilled, which is not something we're in the habit of suggesting for our red wines. Our Italian Barbera lies somewhere between the body of a cab and a pinot and is the ideal choice for a "ladies who lunch" kind of afternoon.


Wild Child

We couldn't not have a weird white in the mix, right?! The Vermentino grape is native along the coast of Italy on the island of Sardinia (yeah, like the fish). Because of its origin, this grape offers a salty, crisp flavor that's incredibly easy to drink and enjoy. We say it's "weird" only because it's not widely known by name, but chances are you've probably had it before if you've ever ordered white wine in an Italian restaurant. If you love peaches and lemons and get a kick out of anything that reminds you of the sea, our Vermentino is the perfect Italian white to experience on a sunny day outside.



For the Chardonnay lovers who are looking to dig a bit deeper in the world of bold whites, a Viognier (pronounced vee-own-yay) could be your next big adventure. Viogniers tend to have more range; while they can be creamy with hints of vanilla like their Chardonnay counterpart, they also offer lighter, fruitier flavors like tangerine, mango, and honeysuckle. It’s still a more full-bodied white wine, but unlike Chardonnay, it’s softer on acidity and more perfumed. Spend an afternoon with a glass of Viognier amongst the flowers and it’ll all make sense.


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