Jackson Estate 2002 Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc ($12.99)
Clear and very pale in color with a slight greenish glint, it offers the distinct scent of a ripe jalapeño pepper, signature of the benchmark New Zealand Sauvignon Blanc style, so fresh and true that you almost expect the wine's flavor to be spicy hot. But of course it's not; it's full and round, though, tart white fruit flavors, lime and grapefruit, so fruity that it seems slightly sweet at first, but it finishes dry, snappy and long. Last tasted almost exactly one year ago, its modern screw cap closure appears to have preserved it with very little change. US Importer: Rock Creek Wine Merchants LLC, Bethesda, Md. (Oct 20, 2003)

FOOD MATCH: Anticipating its green-chile flavors, I paired it with a vegetarian match, conchiglie (small shell) pasta topped with a creamy blend of ricotta and chopped fresh spinach. Kiwi sauvignon blancs generally do well with seafood, too, particularly oysters on the half-shell.

WEB LINK: http://www.jacksonestate.co.nz/

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