I came across one of my few remaining Washington state whites today, as I have since moved back to California, I fear it will be less likely for my oral aperture to appreciate WA-Wines. The 2011 EFESTÉ Sauvage (meaning wild in French) Sauvignon Blanc is 100% Sauvignon Blanc from the well-regarded Boushey Vineyard in the Yakima Valley. Dick Boushey has been growing grapes for 30 plus years, and his humbleness, experience, not to mention, his amazing fruit, are the reasons behind his much sought after grapes.
The wineries’ name EFESTÉ, which you pronounced F-S-T, comes from the first initial of the last names of the winery’s founders: Daniel and Helen Ferrelli, Patrick Smith, and Kevin and Angela Taylor. The label looks like an upside down human to me, but is in fact, a native Australian symbol for a kangaroo. Located in Woodinville, WA, EFESTÉ believes in the utilization of native yeast in the fermentation of their wines, as opposed to purchased commercialized yeast. It “creates flavors unique to each particular vineyard. We encourage character; great wines should have personality.” And by golly, their wines do have it in bushels! I’ve known EFESTÉ for a few years, even enjoyed a few cheeky conversations with Brennon Leighton, the original winemaker who in fact, moved to a new winemaking position at Charles Smith wines and K Vintners after the 2011 harvest. I have never once been disappointed win the wines from EFESTÉ, and that’s saying something.
Alright, ladies and gentlemen, now for what you’ve all been waiting for, the nougaty gooey goodness of the wine itself.
Color: A lovely and brilliant yellow towards the green spectrum of color.
Aroma: A pleasant punch of aroma straight to the nose with grapefruit, apple, lime, and mineral notes along with hints of toast, herbs, pine, and grass at the backside.
Palate: The palate has abundant minerality and zesty acidity with fleshy citrus flavors. A tad of oak rounds and fleshes out the mouth, lending to a softer, more finessed balance of zesty acidity and lushness on the palate. It is a crowd pleasing Sauvignon Blanc, as it has the acidity that true Savvy lovers crave but a plush mouth which can easily convert the non-Sauv Blanc appreciators. Rich but not pompous, bling without overdoing it.
What to do with it: Sip it, gulp it, drink it poolside, or inside. This is a wine you can savor while laying listlessly on a lawn chair, with long lingering lyrics of Lionel Richie, Little Richard, or Lady Gaga.
The 411: Aged 8 months on lees in French oak, 9% new.12.45% alcohol. 465 cases produced.
~ Eryn Supple, SIAG