Dark Horse Sauvignon Blanc
by Nick Harman - Sunday September 17, 2017 12:09 pm
I’m not usually a fan of wines with ‘funny’ names, it seems to be selling to a youth market that’s obsessed with craft ale and gin anyway, so why bother?
Still, at least this one has a reason and it’s not just some random funny name plucked out of the air. Basically this is a Kiwi Sauvignon Blanc on the palate but under the skin it’s as Californian as the Eagles.
That’s because it’s made from Californian grapes by Dark Horse winemaker Beth Liston, a very modern winemaker.
And it’s rather good, more honeyed than I expected but still with a crisp finish. Toward the end of the bottle that crispness began to turn rather more acidic than I care for, the reason I don’t drink a lot of white wine is that my stomach doesn’t like anything even vaguely acidic.
It also doesn’t like Mr Kipling’s Cakes anymore, even though its owner still adores them. LIfe can be exceedingly cruel. Those bright pink slices are now denied to me forever.
Back to the wine. At 13% it’s quite a belter for a white and it packs a lot in for the money, a very reasonable £8.50. We drank it with a homemade stir-fry that had plenty of sweet peppers, as well as chilli and sichuan peppers, and it made a good partner. The underlying citrus clearing the palate of the slightly oily residue of each mouthful of food.
It has all the style one expects from a NZ Sauvignon Blanc, zest and tropical fruit, but at the price it punches above its weight on supermarket shelves.
Hide the label and ask guests what they think it is and from where. See if they know a dark horse when they see one.
Dark Horse produce reds as well as whites, check out their (rather irritatingly over egged) website.