When we think of white wine, Chardonnay generally leaps to mind. Even so, some of the very best white wines produced in the United States come not from the pale, regal grape of Burgundy, but from Sauvignon Blanc, the dominant white grape from Bordeaux. In many ways more accessible, this wine represents a lighter take on white, one that emphasizes the fruit essences, which the Chalk Hill 2000 Estate Bottled Sauvignon Blanc, in particular, displays with style. Redolent with peach, apricot, and pear, the 2000 Chalk Hill surprises the palate with its rich vanilla and burnt sugar notes gathered under a sustained motif of rich oak.
Chalk Hill Vineyards, 707.838.4306, www.chalkhill.com, $29