While some Sauvignon Blanc-Semillon blends present too much Sauvignon character, which is to say appear lean and green, the Sanctuary Peak Sauvignon Blanc 2014 (R105 a bottle) which includes a portion of Semillon is arguably too rich and complex to be pitched as a single-variety wine.
The amount of Semillon – 11% fermented spontaneously and matured for 3 months in 100% new French oak – is not much but it makes a massive contribution.
A wonderfully expressive nose of citrus blossom and fynbos, pear and white peach, perhaps a hint of blackcurrant as well as some white pepper. The palate, meanwhile, is rich and full with coated acidity – there’s real weight here without the wine becoming ponderous and it’s about as demanding as Sauvignon gets.
It’s understandable why Shannon management want the wine viewed as straight Sauvignon as single-variety white wines generally outsell blends but this ain’t quaffer to be sipped by the side of the swimming pool. I think Shannon should grasp the nettle – make a proper blend and go up against the big boys like Cape Point Vineyards, Tokara and Vergelegen.