Sipping with Grace: Cupcake Sauvignon Blanc with pesto pasta

For those looking for something light and extremely flavorful.



This is the Cupcake Sauvignon Blanc and the pesto pasta with garlic bread dip.

JARED GRACE, Evergreen columnist

This is the pesto pasta with garlic bread dip.

Cupcake Vineyards’ 2021 Sauvignon Blanc is smooth and savory with 12.5% alcohol and 100% Sauvignon Blanc grapes.

This wine starts with notes of pear and apple, as well as grassy gooseberry and straw, and finishes with light flavors of citrus. 

Cupcake Vineyards is based in Livermore, California; however, this particular wine was made in Marlborough, New Zealand.

Marlborough has a much cooler growing season than California and most other wine-grape growing areas. With a cooler growing season, you end up with a higher acid content in your wine. This is because the grapes ripen slower, and more of the acids stick around instead of diminishing and making more sugars.

Compared to other Sauvignon Blancs, Cupcake’s doesn’t really taste like it has the acidity that others do. This gives the wine a more tame mouthfeel than I have tasted in any wine.

I paired this wine with a Pesto pasta, a side of garlic bread dip and toasted rosemary bread. This pairing works especially well because of the match between the grassy flavors of the wine and the herbal flavors of the pesto.

The wine’s flavors are enough to hold up to a fragrant and flavorful dish while not falling flat or overpowering the light garlic in the pesto. The high acidity in the wine is also the perfect palate cleanser for the parmesan and romano in the pesto, giving you even more of the available flavors in the dish.

I didn’t do it in this pairing, but a lightly-seasoned, pan-fried chicken breast or some cut and pan-fried cherry or sun-dried tomatoes would be other great additions.

This is the garlic bread dip on top of the toasted rosemary bread.

The second part of this pairing was a dip made of cream cheese, garlic, scallions, oregano, salt, pepper, olive oil and parmesan on toasted rosemary French bread.

This was more of a side, but it worked well with the wine and pesto all the same. The dip and bread paired perfectly with the acidity and dryness of the Sauv Blanc because of the rich cheesy flavors.

To consume this wine at its best, I recommend opening it for around five minutes and chilling it to 45–50 degrees Fahrenheit before serving. The best glass to use with this wine, as well as other fruity and floral wines, is a tall and slender bowl.

Winery: Cupcake Vineyards

Varietal: Sauvignon Blanc

Vintage: 2021

Locations: Livermore, California

Price: $7–14

Pairing: Pesto pasta with a side of garlic bread dip and toasted rosemary bread

I would like to emphasize that this column is not a review; my purpose for writing this series is to provide as much information about a wine as I can so that you can find your niche.

If you would like to inquire about anything I have talked about in these columns or recommend wines for me to pair in the future email me at [email protected].

Drink up!