I’ve been through a lot of summers here on San Juan Island and I still let the summer slow down my content on this blog. Even with Covid-19 hanging over our heads, the summer-time crowd is as active as ever here in the islands. People are everywhere and I understand why. We can’t go to Canada because the border is closed, and no one wants us in Europe right now. So, taking a vacation to somewhere as beautiful as the San Juan Islands makes perfect sense. There are very few cases of Covid-19 here, and most are history anyway. I think there might be 5 or 6 active cases and that may be a stretch. The interesting part is that most of the cases were brought here by locals, not tourists. In the San Juans, it’s all about the outdoors and to be quite honest, that is the safest place to be. Some soothsayers proclaimed we would have a huge outbreak here fourteen days after the Fourth of July. Well damn, they were wrong! I am really looking forward to all of this going away and getting back to seeing faces without masks.
I acquired a few bottles of very good wine (I hope) from a friend I have referred to in the past as Dionysus. He has moved off the island and decided to share some of his stash with me and a few others. I have tried a few of the wines already, and the one that surprised me the most in a good way was the Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc. This is a well-known Sauv Blanc out of New Zealand. It used to be one of my favorites even though I couldn’t really afford it at the time. They lost their original winemakers who moved on to start Dog Point Winery, also in New Zealand. I don’t know the whole story, but real or imagined, I thought the quality went down a few notches. The Cloudy Bay Sauvignon Blanc I was given was 2010, which was quitea bit after the said winemakers had made their exodus from the winery. I opened it fairly soon after getting it thinking there is no way a Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand is going to be any good at ten years old. Boy was I wrong! It was stellar. A near-perfect balance of fruit and acidity, all in harmony. It wasn’t a grapefruit bomb like so many are from NZ. It had notes of lime, melon, kiwi and of course a pinch of grapefruit. It also had some nice minerality that rounded it out. Now, I am going to buy a bottle of the current vintage and try it. Dare I put one away in my cellar for a few years? Sauvignon Blanc is not known for its aging ability, but obviously there are exceptions. Sancerre, Sauvignon Blanc from the Loire Valley in France is one of those exceptions. However, I would have never thought to look to New Zealand for and ageable white. That is what I love about the wine world. It is full of surprises. You could spend your life studying this subject and to your last breath, you will not know all there is to know.
Stan The Wine Man