Sauvignon Blanc Flashcards Preview

WSET ® Level 2 Wine > Sauvignon Blanc > Flashcards

Flashcards in Sauvignon Blanc Deck (32)
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In what climates does Sauvignon Blanc prefer to grow?

  • Cool
  • Moderate


Describe the general style of Sauvignon Blanc.

  • Dry
  • High acidity
  • Light to medium body
  • Aromatic/floral
  • Herbaceous (grass, bell pepper, asparagus)
  • Fruits range from gooseberry to passionfruit
  • Most are unoaked


What grape is typically blended with Sauvignon Blanc?



When Sauvignon Blanc is made as a single-varietal wine, which type of vessel is it usually fermented in?

Inert vessels, such as stainless steel.


Why isn't new oak usually used on single-varietal Sauvignon Blanc?

Oak flavors typically overpower the fruity characteristics of Sauvignon Blanc.


When is Sauvignon Blanc normally best consumed?

In its youth when fruit flavors and herbaceous notes are at their freshest.

Sauvignon Blanc can develop unappealing flavors (decaying vegetables) as it ages.


What are the 2 regions in France that are best known for Sauvignon Blanc?

  1. Loire
  2. Bordeaux


Which region in France is known to bottle Sauvignon Blanc as a single varietal?

Loire Valley


Which appellations in Loire produce quality Sauvignon Blanc?

In descending quality:

  1. Sancerre AOC
  2. Pouilly-Fumé AOC
  3. Touraine AOC


Where are Sancerre AOC and Pouilly-Fumé AOC located in relation to one another?

They are across the Loire River from one another.


What is the climate of Sancerre, Pouilly-Fumé, and Touraine?

Cool climate


In the cooler climate of the Loire Valley, what characteristics will Sauvignon Blanc express?

  • Dry
  • High acidity
  • Green apple
  • Herbaceous
  • Wet river rock, especially in Sancerre AOC


Which is lower in quality: Touraine AOC or Sancerre AOC?

Touraine AOC is lower in quality to Sancerre AOC (it's usually acceptable to good quality, but never high quality).

Sauvignon Blanc from Touraine AOC will be inexpensive, come from a broader area, and will be more simple and fruit-forward than Sancerre.


What 3 appellations in Bordeaux are known for Sauvignon Blanc?

In descending order of quality:

  1. Péssac-Léognan AOC
  2. Graves AOC
  3. Bordeaux AOC


Which region in France is known to blend Sauvignon Blanc with Sémillon?



Of Bordeaux's 3 appellations known for Sauvignon Blanc, which produces the most generic in style?

Bordeaux AOC


Because Bordeaux typically blends Sauvignon Blanc with Sémillon, what winemaking technique do many winemakers use?

Barrel aging

White wines from Bordeaux will develop attractive and pleasant aromas from the oak maturation, such as honey and nuts.


Why aren't there significant plantings of Sauvignon Blanc in the South of France?

The South of France is too warm for Sauvignon Blanc to retain its characteristic freshness.

But when Sauvignon Blanc is grown in the south of France, it is at higher elevation.


Which region in New Zealand is identified with Sauvignon Blanc?



Why are there so many different styles of Sauvignon Blanc coming out of Marlborough?

  • Winemakers can blend across diverse sites, or they can bottle single-vineyard wines;
  • Winemakers will harvest grapes at different ripeness levels and blend them, or they will bottle from one site that was harvested all at once.

Flavors can range from lean and precise Loire Valley-styled Sauvignon Blanc to super fruity and exaggerated asparagus Sauvignon Blancs.


Are Sauvignon Blancs from Marlborough usually bottled as single varietals or are they blended with other grape varietals?

Single varietal


In Australia, is Sauvignon Blanc bottled as a single varietal or blended with other grape varietals?

Both, and when it's blended it's usually with Semillon.


Name 2 appellations in Australia known for Sauvignon Blanc.

  1. Margaret River
  2. Adelaide Hills


What impact does Semillon/Sémillon have when it's blended with Sauvignon Blanc?

Semillon/Sémillon adds weight and texture to Sauvignon Blanc, giving it a fuller body.

Semillon/Sémillon also gives the wine longer aging potential.


Why are Margaret River and Adelaide Hills good places to grow Sauvignon Blanc?

Both are cooled by sea breezes, and Adelaide Hils is at a higher altitude.

Adelaide Hills is 600-650 meters (roughly 2000 feet) above sea level.


2 regions in Chile make acceptable to very good-quailty Sauvignon Blanc.

What are they in ascending order?

  1. Central Valley
  2. Casablanca Valley


What makes Casablanca Valley a good place to grow Sauvignon Blanc?

  • Morning fog
  • Cool ocean breezes


What 2 areas in South Africa are known for making refreshing Sauvignon Blanc?

  1. Constantia
  2. Elgin


What cools down Constantia?

Cool ocean breezes coming up from Antarctica.


What cools down Elgin?


Elgin is one of the coolest wine growing areas in South Africa.