Napa Valley is known as the land of great Cabernet Sauvignon. But, in the midst of the robust and refined Bordeaux-based red wines, the lively white wine cousin of the noteworthy variety, Sauvignon Blanc, also shines. It makes sense that the white and red grapes would grow together. Sauvignon Blanc is the parent of Cabernet Sauvignon. The red grape is a cross between the white variety and Cabernet Franc.
Interestingly, Sauvignon Blanc is a crossing of the Chenin Blanc and Traminer varieties. Traminer is an Austrian and German white grape that is a sibling of the highly fragrant, floral, fruit-forward grape, Gewertztraminer.
In Napa, Sauvignon Blanc tends to shy away from the Traminer character, delivering wines that showcase bright acidity, luscious fruit, and subtle floral and herbal notes. At Napa Valley’s prestigious Quintessa Winery and Vineyards, the variety boldly shines with elegance and balance, walking side by side with the Cabernet producer’s signature grape.
Quintessa’s Illumination Sauvignon Blanc blends fruit grown in Napa and Sonoma counties and includes a mix of Sauvignon Blanc clones, as well as 20% Semillion, the other white grape variety of Bordeaux. All the fruit is hand-harvested before fermenting with native yeast in a combination of vessels, including new and neutral French oak, concrete eggs, and stainless steel. The combination of all creates a luscious, lively, balanced wine showcasing citrus flavors of grapefruit and Meyer lemon, with hints of passionfruit, white peach, and apricot. With a well-rounded palate that brings in creaminess and notes of toasted spice and lemon curd, producing a nuanced, balanced, completely delicious wine. This is a wine you can enjoy with poultry and seafood, as well as a filet of beef with a creamy peppercorn sauce. Or, sip slowly on its own, enjoying the wine’s quality and craftsmanship. #Cheers