Sipping with Grace: Whitehaven Sauvignon Blanc with a pesto pizza

For our first women in wine two-part series, we are featuring the 2022 Sauvignon Blanc from Whitehaven with a pesto pizza



This is the 2022 Sauvignon Blanc from Whitehaven with the pesto pizza.

JARED GRACE, Evergreen columnist

This week, for our family weekend edition and to celebrate women for Women’s History Month, I will be highlighting prominent women in the wine industry and pairing their wines. For this article, I am pairing Jenn Barak’s 2022 Sauvignon Blanc from Whitehaven.

These are both of the featured wines of the week: the 2020 Apothic Crush Soft Red Blend and the 2022 Sauvignon Blanc from Whitehaven.

This wine has a 100% Sauvignon Blanc varietal content with an ABV, or alcohol by volume, of 13%, opening with notes of pink grapefruit, lime zest and tropical fruits complemented by sweet grassy aromas.

This wine combines the sweetness of a Washington Riesling and the grassiness of a Pinot Grigio, for a crisp and vivid mouthfeel that is refreshing and provides a satisfying drinking experience.

One thing I find really sets this wine apart from the rest is that it takes a completely different approach to a sweet wine.

Many people I know that do not like sweet wines find that they overpower a lot of the characteristics they like to see in a wine. However, I find that this wine exemplifies taking sweetness and building on it without relying on sweetness to take the show.

So if you are looking for a wine that is sweet, but not overpowering, and has plenty of notes to show, this wine is for you.

In one of my past pairings, I discussed how well a Sauvignon Blanc and pesto pasta work together. I thought I could take that a step further because of this wine’s unique characteristics.

I paired this wine with a pesto pizza consisting of some Classico pesto, onions, artichoke hearts, low-fat mozzarella, smoked provolone, asiago, parmesan, romano, fontina cheese and a generous brushing of garlic and herb butter baked on the crust.

The pesto in this recipe is by far the star of the show, and the grassy notes of this wine pair perfectly with it, as we saw in the pesto pasta pairing. However, to pair with the sweetness of the wine, I used many different kinds of cheese that were robust in their own right, giving a burst of flavor while also balancing out the wine’s sweet and grassy notes.

To consume this wine at its best, I would recommend opening it at room temperature and putting it in the fridge 15 minutes before serving.

Winery: Whitehaven

Varietal: Sauvignon Blanc

Vintage: 2022

Locations: Marlborough, New Zealand

Price: $14–19

Pairing: Pesto pizza

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!