Hunter’s Home Block Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc 2019 ($30)
They might be one of Marlborough (nay, New Zealand’s) oldest and most successful wine companies, but it’s taken them until now to declare an ‘icon’ release sauvignon blanc. Their young winemaker, James Macdonald has been fizzing at the bung to test what’s possible with sauvignon blanc, whilst retaining the ‘Marlboroughness’ of the style. Well folks, I do believe, with the Home Block, he’s cracked it. 25-year-old vines were cropped 6tonnes to the hectare (less than half of the strictly-enforced limit to be given ‘Appellation Marlborough’ accreditation) then handpicked and whole-bunch pressed. 10% of the juice was fermented in older, seasoned French Oak puncheons and the rest fermented in tank on full solids (that’s all the natural, fibrous, fleshy stuff present in the juice) before it was all aged for 5 months on its yeast lees. This is all a lead up to letting you know that this is one hell of a sauvignon blanc and quite frankly, my favourite thing to sip this week. No. Wait. This month. Crisp, juicy, lemon-laced and heaving with white nectarine, crushed basil and passionfruit punchiness, it’s a ripe, superbly structured sauvignon with real complexity and personality and length of flavour. Delicious!