Happy Canyon, Santa Ynez Valley
Since 1983 we have consistently produced one of the more unusual sauvignon blanc’s in the state. Few people take the varietal seriously, but we think that with a little attention it makes a fabulously complex and food friendly wine.
We start in the vineyard and have the grower tend our blocks using organic methods. Close attention is paid during the growing season to encourage early physiological ripeness—which is to say we are looking to have ripe flavors at modest sugar levels so that we can avoid having a wine of excessively high alcohol. Once harvested we gently press the whole clusters of fruit and ferment the juice in older French oak barrels. The wine is bottled in the spring and then ages for almost a year before we begin selling it. On first release this sauvignon blanc is racy and fresh, but those with the wherewithal to hold it for a few years can see how it transforms into an amazingly complex and exotic drink with age. For my taste the 2008 is at perfect phase—still pale and zesty, but with a richness that only comes with time.
Our 2013 possesses a strikingly pungent bouquet of lemon, herbs and minerals that is brought into focus by the aroma of white flowers and ruby red grapefruit. The palate is brisk and mineral-y and comes alive with something as simple as a bit of goat cheese on a slice of homemade bread or a platter of fresh oysters. This is decidedly not a cocktail wine, it demands food and blossoms with it.
Blend: 100% Sauvignon Blanc | Alc: 13% | Vinification: 100% Neutral French Oak | Barrel Aging: 7 Months | Total Production: 754 cases
Robert Parkers’s Wine Advocate
“In contrast to the Viognier, the 2013 Sauvignon Blanc Mcginley doesn’t go through malolactic fermentation, yet sees a similar elevage in older oak barrel. Possessing a Loire style in its grassy herbs, citrus, white flowers and striking minerality, it’s medium-bodied, racy and even borderline tart on the finish. Possessing fabulous purity of fruit and a clean, dry finish, I’d drink it over the coming couple of years, but certainly wouldn’t be surprised to see it have a long, interesting evolution either.” – JD 91 Points
Antonio Galloni’s Vinous
“Pale yellow. Intense mineral-accented aromas of lime and lemongrass, with suave floral and mint nuances adding complexity. Juicy, finely etched citrus and orchard fruit flavors show impressive power and focus, with a note of tarragon kicking in on the back half. Supple and alluringly sweet on the lingering finish.” – JR 91 Points