For all of its purported similarities to Bordeaux, Long Island produces surprising little Sauvignon Blanc. It's the white wine grape of Bordeaux after all. Yet, those that are made always seem to capture the region's uniqueness. The best taste like Long Island in a bottle. Channing Daughters Winery, one of only three producers within the Hamptons Long Island AVA, sources the grapes for its Sauvignon Blanc from the Mudd Vineyard on the North Fork – where some of the Island's oldest Sauvignon Blanc grapes grow.
Winemaker Christopher Tracy is a white wine wizard – mixing and
matching both expected and exotic varieties to craft a wide array of
While composed almost entirely of steel-fermented Sauvignon Blanc, Tracy also adds a squirt of barrel fermented musque clone Chardonnay to the mix. The result is a delicious, exquisitely balanced white that, at $20, is one of better values in CDW's sometimes-expensive portfolio.
A super-pale greenish yellow in the glass, the nose is extremely expressive with ripe grapefruit and lime aromas accented by distinct minerality. Flavorful and light bodied, those same fruit and mineral characteristics carry over to a refreshing, begging-for-fresh-seafood palate.
When Long Island Sauvignon Blanc is at its best, it lives somewhere between California and New Zealand with a hint of Sancerre – not aggressively grassy or herbal like many New Zealand bottlings and not nearly as fruity or tropical as many from California. This wine tastes like the North Fork and the nearby Peconic Bay. This is Long Island terroir.
(This review first appeared on Appellation America.)