Clean. Crisp. Refreshing. Those words are often used to describe Sauvignon Blanc wine.

Originally from western France, Sauvignon Blanc grapes are now used to make a white wine that is enjoyed all around the world.

This year, a Sauvignon Blanc has shaped up quite nicely at Rooster Hill Vineyards in the Finger Lakes region of New York State. Rooster Hill has a very limited edition of the estate-grown vintage, with just 65 cases produced and recently released, said Amy Hoffman, Rooster Hill president and co-founder.
Rooster Hill winemaker Barry Tortolon said the Sauvignon Blanc has a hint of the old world and the new world in both bouquet and flavor.

He said Rooster Hill has been trying to find a local source for Sauvignon Blanc grapes for the past few years without any luck – until this year. He said the winery got a ton and a quarter of the grapes from the same source as its Chardonnay – Sawmill Creek Vineyards on the east side of Seneca Lake.  

The purchased grapes were in peak condition at arrival, Tortolon said.

“Because of the size of the lot, it was split into different lots and fermented using two different yeasts – one to accentuate the grassy and steely qualities of Sauvignon Blanc and the other to release the fruity components  (guava, passion fruit and grapefruit) – then blended together after fermentation.

“The resulting wine is both complex and ripe,” he said. “On the nose it has a touch of flintiness along with tropical aromas. It finishes with a degree of creaminess and silky texture with a burst of grapefruit at the end.”

Rooster Hill Vineyards  is located at 489 Route 54 on the east side of Keuka Lake near Penn Yan.