It seems the dominant wine region in our sauvignon blanc shortlist oscillates between Margaret River and the Adelaide Hills according to which was blessed with the finest vintage. The Adelaide Hills takes the honours from Margaret River this year (just!), thanks exclusively to the stunning 2021 season. Notable, too, that while back vintages dominated the line up last year, this year this great season put forward almost two-thirds of the list. Wrattonbully is not to be underestimated, and last year’s winner of Terre à Terre Crayeres again stepped forward and went head-to-head with Margaret River’s Flowstone. There was but one vote between them on first count, and the same result on revoting, with Flowstone ahead on both counts.
96 points | Price when tasted $55
Intense, sweaty, concentrated...this is a rippling pool of flavour. The oak impact is significant (as usual), meaning it is built to last. Margaret River excels at concentrated sauvignon blanc and this big, oaky style is becoming more and more prevalent, led by a cohort of brilliant, skilled producers – one of whom is Flowstone's Pym. So: here we have quenching wine, stuffed to the gills with salted pineapple, crunchy, ripe Granny Smith apples, saline acidity...and lots of other good green things. Delicious. – Erin Larkin
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*This is an edited extract from the 2023 Halliday Wine Companion, with reviews by Dave Brookes, Jane Faulkner, Ned Goodwin MW, James Halliday, Erin Larkin, Jeni Port, Philip Rich and chief editor Tyson Stelzer.
Top image credit: Wine Australia.