Te Whare Ra Sauvignon Blanc 2022 is pure TWR – that is to say it is produced by the amazing Te Whare Ra Winery, a small, family-run vineyard and winery. The fruit for this Sauvignon Blanc comes from a mix of the cooler Awatere Valley and from TWR’s warmer Renwick vineyards which are certified organic. Though the Awatere vineyards are not certified organic, they are sustainably certified and are cared for according to organic principles and to TWR’s own environmentally friendly and sustainable principles.
I agree with Anna Flowerday’s comment to me that Te Whare Ra Sauvignon Blanc 2022 is “a Sauvignon Blanc for people who think they don’t like Sauvignon Blanc”. It’s not the blowsy tropical fruit, Cloudy Bay style but a much fresher, more subtle style – very citrussy with lemon and lime on the nose and palate and notes of elderflower and gooseberry and just a hint of something more tropical in the background. Although the wine is marked as oaked, large neutral oak barrels are used for part on the blend, the rest is fermented in stainless steel – the barrels are used more for texture than for taste. Read more about this in my oaked vs. unoaked wines blogpost. The lemon and lime flavours on the palate are round rather than sharp which make this a very smooth wine with just the right amount of acidity to make this a very balanced and pretty sophisticated wine.
How to Enjoy this Wine
Recommended with fish, shellfish, chicken, pork and roast ham. It will stand up to richer dishes better than some other white wines.
Serve at: 10 – 12°C
“This is our 2nd ever release of a Sauvignon Blanc under our SV5182 designation. We feel that this wine showcases the best expression of our site here at Te Whare Ra and the stellar quality of the 2022 vintage in Marlborough. This wine is the culmination of a 15 year project we have been pursuing with Sauvignon Blanc from our TWR home block. This wine is all about fruit weight and texture which is achieved with low crops, meticulous canopy management and lots of attention to detail with fruit selection. The focus was making a wine which has great texture and fleshiness and which is characterised by lots of layers and complexity with notes of ripe tropical notes with stone-fruit and citrus with a lovely line of ripe minerality.
This 2022 SV release shows gorgeous white stone-fruit and a great florality coupled with lovely ripe tropicals and hints of basil and lime. These follow through to the palate – which is fine and weighty with vibrant fleshy fruit and great texture balanced by a ripe, juicy acidity and lingering minerality. This wine is deliciously drinkable upon release but will also benefit from some time in your cellar if you choose to do so.”
94 Points / #10 of 63 in Marlborough – The Real Review
“Smooth, seamless sauvignon with lemongrass, capsicum, lime, passionfruit and subtle mineral flavours. Refreshingly dry with a crisp, mouthwatering and lengthy finish. Refined and sophisticated wine.”
93 Points – James Suckling.com
“A more Sancerre-like sauvignon blanc with sliced green apples, spiced pears, crushed stones and some gooseberries. Medium to full body. Round mouth-feel and steely acidity. From organically grown grapes.”
94 Points – Sam Kim
“A beautifully styled Sauvignon, showing Granny Smith apple, nectarine, lime peel and fig characters on the nose. The palate displays pristine fruit flavours with refined texture and zesty acidity, finishing lingering and mouth-watering. Wonderfully expressive and harmonious with true varietal intensity and vibrancy.”
93 Points / 15 Wines under £20 – Decanter
“Fruit from 1979-planted vines in Wairau (valley) supplements the majority from cooler Awatere (valley), with 10% of the blend fermented and lees aged in for about nine months in large old oak barrels. Weighty yet vibrant with a textured palate of nutty pear and ripe guava alongside greener elderflower and tomato leaf notes. Mouthwatering acidity and a long citrus finish really refreshes.”