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2013 Mt. Beautiful Sauvignon Blanc 

North Canterbury, New Zealand

Retail $15-$18

This vibrant wine is produced on New Zealand's south island in the province of Canterbury. This sustainable winery is named for the area's picturesque peak, Mt. Beautiful. The nearby pinnacle — at 1,400 feet above sea level — shields the vineyards from the harsh winds that thrash the coast. It protects the winery's 165 acres of vineyards, which range from 80 to 320 feet above sea level. The vineyards also are subject to cool breezes, warm summers, ample sunshine, minimal rainfall and a long growing season. Following harvest, the juice from Mt. Beautiful's fruit was fermented in stainless steel tanks with a variety of natural and aroma-enhancing yeasts, and several batches were aged on the lees for six months prior to blending and bottling. In the glass, it exhibits bouquets of grapefruit, kiwi, lime zest and hints of pepper and tropical fruit. On the palate, the wine's brisk acidity provides the backbone for flavors of blood orange, lemon, papaya, passion fruit, a touch of spice and mineral notes. Drink it with sushi, shrimp remoulade, crabmeat ravigote, raw oysters, pan-seared fish, artichokes, asparagus, Asian dishes and spicy dishes. Buy it at: Sidney's Wine Cellar and Martin Wine Cellar in Mandeville. Drink it at: The Steak Knife and Chateau du Lac Bistro in Metairie.

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