We began with a meticulous wine selection –vetting the world’s major Sauvignon blanc regions with an eye for regional distinction, exceptional quality and availability, of course. (Unfortunately, I was on the road and missed much of this difficult work!)
These are the wines that were decided upon:
2011 Greywacke Sauvignon blanc, Marlborough, paired with the Fiddlehead 2011 Goosebury Sauvignon blanc, Santa Ynez Valley.
2008 Alphonse Mellot Pouilly-Fumé par Emmanuelle Mellot, paired with the Fiddlehead 2009 Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara Sauvignon blanc, Santa Ynez Valley.
2008 Chateau Larrivet Haut-Brion Blanc, Pessac Leognan, paired with the Fiddlehead 2007 Hunnysuckle Sauvignon blanc, Santa Ynez Valley.
The tasting was fantastic. Nearly 50 people participated, many with personal tasting connections to one or more of the International regions featured. The pairings were spectacular – both for their contrasts and for their similarities!
All three of the Fiddlehead wines are produced from our grapes grown in the Happy Canyon of Santa Barbara AVA, the part of the Santa Ynez Valley with the warmest daytime temperatures. This region is quite unique for its ability to fully ripen our Sauvignon blanc fruit while preserving the acidity and freshness due to that ever-present evening coastal fog. Pear and white peach notes take center stage, with rich floral and tropical fruit notes provide layering in a most seductive way.
On the first flight, the New Zealand wine showed layers of wet slate and herbaceousness, whereas the Goosebury’s minerality was more limestone in character and the fruit much more expressive and floral. Both had striking acidity, but the luscious fruit notes of Goosie stood out markedly.
The Loire pairing with the Happy Canyon was more enlightening. Both wines had a richness that was quite alluring, with the Pouilly-Fume showing more melon and green bell pepper and the Happy Canyon centering on the peachy-pear. Great pairing, and testament to our assertion that the Happy Canyon is truly inspired by the wines of the Loire!
The wine pairing of the night was the third, with the ’08 Larrivet Haut-Brion showing many of the well developed characteristics that we celebrate in the Hunnysuckle. Still with vibrant fruit and acidity, both wines have developed well in the bottle and showed a glycerin-y richness with nuance of fig, citrus, and dried herbs. It was a coin flip as to which I liked better, until I looked at the retail price. The Bordeaux retails for $80 and the Hunnysuckle for $34!
It’s amazing that we take winemaking options and vintage variablility to craft 3 unique wines grown in this very special place. More significantly, I am awed with the creativity and willingness of the Fiddlehead team to “stick our necks out” and show these wines along side the great SB regions of the world. This event served to entertain, to enlighten and educate our friends who attended. I’m certain each will remember the evening for many years to come.
One additional out-of-the-box twist was the second phase taste pairing of our 3 styles of dry Sauvignon blanc with Talenti gelatos and sorbettos. Typically we don’t think of our wines as dessert wines, but the range of gelato flavors made for a fabulous tasting. Here were the favorite picks, and worth checking out for yourself!
- Goosebury Sauvignon blanc and Lisbon Lemon
- Happy Canyon Sauvignon blanc and Mediterranean Mint Chip (This one blew me away!)
- Hunnysuckle Sauvignon blanc and Tahitian Vanilla
National Sales Manager
Where will you be drinking "728" Fiddlestix Pinot on the magical date of July 28th?
Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, gather your friends and join our virtual toast to this signature wine.
Submit your comments and best "cheers" photos for prizes and recognition! (submit either via our Facebok page our via email at firstname.lastname@example.org).
Our favorite 3 photos win a prize.
And if you find yourself in Santa Barbara County that Saturday, then be sure to join us at our "land-based" party at our Lompoc Tasting Room for a celebration of this wine! The Tasting Room will be decked out for the day and library vintages of "728" will be available for taste and purchase.
Saturday, June 9th 5-8pm
We're kicking off the summer with a fantastic 3-part Wine Club Social! And for
those of you who aren't yet members of our Wine Club, we want you there too!
Part I: A sit-down educational tasting, comparing our Sauvignon Blancs to their
international counterparts. Taste Goosie and New Zealand SB, taste
Happy Canyon next to a Pouilly Fume from the Loire Valley, taste
Hunnysuckle against an Haut Brion (white Bordeaux).
As part of the tasting, view maps, talk geography and AVA's, compare
production techniques and discuss food pairings.
Part II: Gelato & Fiddlehead Sauvignon Blanc tasting - Goosie, Happy and Hunny
paired with 7 Talenti gelato/sorbetto flavors. Vote your favorite flavors!
Part III: Top the evening off with Avant pizza and Pinot (our recently reviewed
93-point '728', of course!)...and more gelato! Time to mix-and-mingle
and be social party animals!
Limited to just 48 guests, so be sure to RSVP early.
Wine Club entry is FREE (up to 2 tickets per membership).
Have friends that want to join the party? Non Wine Clubbers get in on the fun for only $25.
FIDDLEHEAD CELLARS, 1597 E. CHESTNUT AVENUE LOMPOC, CA 93436
Call or email to request private tasting appointments and to coordinate wine pick-ups.
1 805.735.7728 (weekdays only)