2010 Pascal Jolivet Sancerre, 12.5%, $25
Quite a piercing nose with some floral top notes, followed by quartzy mineral elements, a touch of unripe peach and some lightly tropical citrus fruit elements.  Wonderfully balanced in the mouth, this has solid acidity and a thin layer of baby fat from ripeness all covering just unripe stone fruit and stony flavors. The back end really gets in a mineral groove that drives the moderately long finish. There’s plenty of acid here but it remains well covered until the finale when it pops with some lemony, faintly woodsy fruit. 89pts

2010 St. Micheal Eppan Sauvignon Blanc Lahn,13%, $20
Sweet smelling with lots of candied lime character and a touch of kiwi fruit, backed up with hints of cut grass and anise. Round and easy on entry with a soft feel to the fruit-driven mid-palate, which exhibits nice pithy citrusy fruits that lead to a crisp, mineral finish with a hint of licorice on the finale. 88pts

2010 Mulderbosch Western Cape, 12.5%, $20

This opens with quite a flush of ripe fruit that’s followed by more mineral scents, with an underlay of cactus leaf and cut grass with hints of pithy dried citrus tones.  Rather lean on entry, then turning a bit fleshier; this nonetheless is vibrant and sapid with a touch of salinity and nice gentle green spice notes over pineapple and citrus fruit flavors. The finish is clean, long and taut with a fine mineral verve and nice grassy accents to the lemon curdy fruit. 88pts

2010 Rutherford Hill Napa Valley Sauvignon Blanc, 14.2%, $18
Nicely balanced on the nose with peach and mineral notes, topped by gentle herbal and floral tones. Zesty and nicely focused in the mouth, this appears a little lean at first but has lovely depth of flavors and a concentrated, if focused, core of peachy fruit. There’s a hint of powder tannin that adds a little peach skin here and complicating notes of pineapple and green plum emerge on the back end. The finish is fairly long and zesty, yet with a nice layer of fruit that keeps the acid balanced.  Light and fresh with a nice blend of both warm and cool climate traits. 88pts

2009 Sauvion Sancerre, 12.5%, $28
A bit gentle, but attractive, with lemon rind, grass, a hint of tarragon and some mineral undertones on the nose. Lovely sweet/sour tension on entry with juicy, yet sweet, citrusy fruit on the palate. This has a fine gossamer texture with fruit that takes on a peachy edge towards the back end and through the moderately long finish, which offers a contrasting steely edge. This is fresh and delicate with nicely pure citrusy fruit that is well accented by the crisp minerality on the moderately long finish. I would like to see more length, but what is here is lovely. 88pts

2010 Martin Ray Napa Carneros Sauvignon Blanc, 14.2%, $20
Shy on the nose with faintly minty herbal tones over light apricot notes with a wisp of grapefruit pith. On entry this is rich and slightly creamy, with great integrated acidity that really fills the mouth. The flavors are light and fresh with a fine base of gravelly minerality supporting clear, crisp and cool, almost bitter apple fruit that has fine persistence on the moderately long mineral/acid-driven finish. This is wonderfully seductive in the mouth, a rare pairing of richness and vibrancy, but that lack of aromatics holds it back a bit. 88pts

TOP 5 SAUV BLANCS SLIDESHOW