SEE that? Little Whitey just gave a Sauvignon blanc 93 points. Is he nuts? Make up your own mind, as you usually do.
We could talk for a very, very long time about how a Champenoise Frenchman, Xavier Bizot, got to be making Sauvignon blanc in the young seabed geology of the south-east reach of South Australia, but we won’t. Instead, we shall discuss his delicious wine. It reeks of the sort of heady vanillinoids I find in Bhut Jolokia and Trinidad Scorpion chillies. These are currently the hottest chillies known on Earth – they are in the extreme nether regions of heat usually reserved for the sprays used by coppers and crooks – and what they do is blister your neurons with capsaicin which does really strange things to them until they build up a protective layer of myelin which somehow cuts off the heat thing but exaggerates the way the human detects and appreciates the types of sweet vanillinoids you might think you smell and taste in pineapple, jackfruit and durian, the most aromatic of all tropical fruits. I love ’em, and I love the way these incredibly hot chillies also trigger mighty gushes of endorphin in my brain, adding a sort of natural-born stone to the whole effect. Smart dudes in white coats are currently testing all this in the direction of a new generation of twin-turbo painkiller medicines, which will be very cool for those of us who are over the opiates. There’s no chilli heat in this lovely wine, of course, but it’s one of the rare birds which exudes aromas like those tropical fruits, setting off a strange range of anticipations in my sensories. When I think I smell those vanillinoids, I buzz with expectation. Just as when I smell truffles, I expect a highly exciting unscented pheromone to waltz through next, to turn me, like, on. This is how the perfume business works. Along with those basic vanilla-like creams, the wine has the aroma of the fossil bones in the seabed limestone of the vineyard, and the bones of dead yeast which Xavier stirred into the wine for months. Calcium. Chalk. Ground bone china. Diatomaceousness. This also proves a tidy dryness to the wine’s tail, but in between these extremes there’s a delicious creamy thing that comforts and relaxes the palate with umami, most unlike anything that happens when you hit the standard Kiwi Savvy-B. You know the type: you reel backwards from that grassy gooseberry soursob battery acid that might cut the fat that launched a thousand chips off your salt’n’pepper squid. You should never eat that shit anyway. Take a bottle of this to the mighty Wah Hing, order instead the salt and pepper eggplant, small bowl of chilli oil on the side, and sit right back and cruise. It’s really cool, comforting Sauvignon blanc that’s completely respectful of the gastronome. Get some.
Author: Philip White
Review Date: Monday, March 11, 2013
Rated: 93 points