NZ Sauvignons – 2008 marathon

Here's something brisk for the new year – an in-depth look at last year's crop of NZ Sauvignons. Tasting a large number of varietal wines from the same country and the same vintage is always a strenuous exercise – mainly in trying not to use the same descriptors over and over again. And 75 New Zealand 2008 Sauvignon Blancs presented a particular challenge.

I'm not saying there isn't significant variation in flavours, style and quality, within as well as between regions, but – especially in this big, on the whole not terribly exciting, vintage – there's rather a lot of...