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May 22, 2012 02:29 PM

Kim Crawford wine

I just bought a few days ago at Costco a 2011 Marlborough Sauvignon Black Kim Crawford wine. I really don't care that much generally for white wines, but I sure liked this.

$12.89, I believe.
Anyone agree or have had it, any comment?

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  1. It's a very tropical fruit forward sauvignon blanc with enough acidity that it isn't too overwhelming. I do like it when I'm in the mood for that sort of wine. Many New Zealand Sauvignon Blancs are in this style. You may also want to check out Matua's Sauvignon Blanc.

    You may also like dry Rieslings and Gewurztraminers.

    2 Replies
    1. re: goldangl95

      Goldang195 & goodhealthgourmet:
      I drank the purchased Matua 2011 Sauv Blanc. I like it more than the Kim Crawford. Thanks for the recommendation. Nice price, too, because it goes down easily $9.49 at Wegman's Gainesville, VA.

      1. re: Rella

        Glad to have helped! Matua tends to have a little more acids, and little less tropical fruit notes that Kim Crawford. Will be curious how you like the others!

        I do really think you'll like bone dry Germanic whites (rieslings, pinot gris, gewurtzaminer, gruner vetliner from Alsace or Germany or Austria), but they'll be pricier and its hard to recommend a producer as they don't produce in bulk quality the way NZ sauv. blancs do. Also, its hard to pick out the truly dry ones (e.g. little to no residual sugar) without help of someone who knows what is on the shelves.

        I'll think about it . ..

    2. A very solid SB and a regular at our summer BBQs.

      1. it's funny, i insisted for years that i only liked reds, because my experience with white was limited to extremely oaky chards. someone finally convinced me to taste their Kim Crawford SB one night, and i was surprised that i liked it! after that i branched out and started trying (and enjoying!) other SBs, as well as different white varietals. the Kim Crawford is a tiny bit too sweet & heavy on the tropical fruit for my taste now - i prefer more flinty or grassy SBs - but it's a nice , refreshing wine that appeals to a lot of people, so it's good for warm-weather entertaining.

        i agree with godangl's Matua recommendation. i also enjoy Cloudy Bay and Oyster Bay (which you might really like given the tropical fruit nose).

        34 Replies
        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

          Today I bought a Matua Sauv Blanc (and a Matua Pinot Noir because it was sitting along side the SB.) Thanks.

          I also bought an Oyster Bay NZ SB.,

          I also bought a Whitehaven NZ SB.

          I saw Cloudy Bay today,too, but didn't get it because I couldn't recall if it was mentioned in the post. I'll try it next time.

          When I said I wanted to try a grassy SB, I was pointed to a South Africa SB Buitenverwachting and bought it.

          Thanks for your posts. I really appreciate it.

          1. re: Rella

            wow, you really committed! ;)

            if you're looking for grass, try a fumé blanc. i'd start with Dry Creek, Grgich Hills, or Ferrari-Carano.

            looking forward to hearing your feedback on all of your purchases, including the Matua red - that one surprised me when i tried it, more of a classic light, balanced Burgundy style rather than a standard high-alcohol New World fruit bomb.

            happy drinking!

            1. re: Rella

              Let us know how you like them! If you like the grassy, green apple taste try a Sancerre (French Region that produces Sauvignon Blanc). Also Pinot Gris (Alsace, Germany) or Gruner Vetliner (Austria) have that type of crispness while still having fruit.

              And if you really like the green appley-ness (without the so much the accompanying sweet fruit) try Grenache Blanc or Albarino.

              Fume Blanc is Sauvignon Blanc that was marketed under a different name in California (hadn't realized that myself for awhile)

              1. re: goldangl95

                Fume Blanc is Sauvignon Blanc that was marketed under a different name in California
                yep - i learned that when i was first introduced to Sauvignon Blanc. since the OP is interested in SB, i figured i'd open her up to other options within the varietal.

                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                  I hope I don't start a 'conversation' as is the norm when I say that I don't drink any California wines, unless ...

                  But I do see that the Matua SB is imported by a Napa CA importer.

                  Not that I see any-at-all conspiracy in the wine business; but I always wonder why an importer address of the Napa Valley imports wine from another country.

                  I see by my wine log that I have bought Bruner Vetliner and liked it.

                  1. re: Rella

                    Many great wine importers are actually located in Northern California. California has very liberal liquor/wine laws when it comes to buying and selling compared to many other states (partially due to its own wine industry creating lots of wine-os). Kermit Lynch, North Berkeley Imports and K & L Wines (though K&L I believe mostly import for their own stores) are the better known ones.

                    Your skepticism on California wines, sadly, is pretty warranted unless you are in-state. The wines are excellent, but the prices are going through the roof, and many of the great wines are not available on the east coast at decent prices.

                    1. re: Rella

                      Would you feel more comfortable, if the address was NYC?


                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        It is not any particular address other than CA that I would be 'more comfortable' with for an importer.

                        There are importers that I tend to prefer their selections. One importer I like is right here in Winchester, VA. It wouldn't make any difference to me if he were anywhere else; just that I had occasion to try various wine imports of his.

                    2. re: goodhealthgourmet

                      One of the common differences between SB's that are labeled "Fume," is the use of oak in the fermentation portion of the process, instead of SS., or glass-lined vessels. There CAN be slight differences between normal SB (usually SS. fermented, or maybe glass-lined vessels) and Fume, which *might* be fermented in oak. For some, it is just a word.


                      1. re: Bill Hunt

                        excellent point. the SS barrel fermentation is what drew me to SB in the first place, as i'm generally not a fan of oak in my white wine.

                        BTW, i was hoping you'd chime in as you're one of my favorite oenophiles here on CH.

                        1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                          <<one of my favorite oenophiles>>

                          Most of my friends just refer to me as a "wino," but thank you for the kind words.


                  2. re: Rella

                    Last night
                    tasted South Africa SB *grassy alongside Oyster Bay NZ SB.
                    DH 'bragged' that he could tell the difference and failed - heehehe.

                    I am bragging now, myself, in that I was able to tell the difference on first taste test. But I really had to hone in 'mentally' on the taste to discern the difference.
                    I could taste just a small bit of fruit in the Oyster Bay.

                    There is an Ecco Domani, Pinot Grigio, wine of the month (or two or three months) that they offer for $4 a glass that I usually order. Twice I've ordered it and it was certainly drinkable with food; however my last visit it was pretty bitter. I know that it is a different grape/s. It is a so-so grape IMO, but now I'm wondering if it is fruity or grassy LOL.

                    1. re: Rella

                      The bitter taste you were drinking (is probably just a guess) is what many people describe as a "grapefruit" or for me, mentally, I think of it as "citrus pith." Pinot Grigio is a high acid wine, and badly made, Pinot Grigio, can taste so sour it starts verging into bitter - with no other notes.

                      The high acidity is also present in Sauvignon Blanc, but, if it's decently made, it usually comes with much more other fruit (peaches, tropical fruit, warm fruit fragrance). Bad/cheap pinot grigio tastes like sucking on a grapefruit.

                      "Grassy" is a less obvious note to pick out at first (so sympathies to your husband!) but as you drink more wine trying to pick up the notes that sense of herbal/grassy as a taste separate from lime/lemon acidity will start becoming more apparent.

                      As a side note, drinking cheap, grocery store Pinot Grigio in college has made me irrationally hate Pinot Grigio.

                      1. re: goldangl95

                        The perceived acid (lemon, grapefruit, and maybe lime) is what I like in many SB's, as they work well with many lighter seafoods - "grapefruit" less, than lemon or lime, IMO.

                        When one adds the "grass," or "damp hay," things might get off a bit, but not always.

                        With NZ SB's, I usually find heavy grapefruit (not so food-friendly, as lemon, or lime), and "damp hay." That often relegates them to the "sipper" variety, where some Cal-SB's, Loire SB's and Bdx. SB's go better.

                        I find similar with Chardonnays, where a Chablis will often pair much better with certain seafood, than a heavily-oaked version, even if from only across the mountains. I love Montrachets with lobster in a creme sauce, but would not think of one with oysters - a Chablis would be a better choice in my book.


                        1. re: goldangl95

                          For me, and my palate, Pinot Gris/Grigio is not a favorite varietal. I think that its popularity has led to vast amounts of poor, to mediocre PG being sold. There are but few versions, that I have ever found enjoyable. There are a few versions out there, that are drinkable, but few, IMHO.


                          1. re: Bill Hunt

                            heh :) my early exposure to Pinot Grigio involved things like Santa Margherita & Ecco Domani...which led me to believe that "good Pinot Grigio" was an oxymoron. i eventually tasted some great Friulian & Alsatian offerings that changed my mind.

                            1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                              Yes, I agree with you on the PG. I can find almost nothing to like with most, but then, there are some, that break the mold. I like the King Estate Reserve PG (only their "Reserve") with Pacific Salmon. There is a tiny Slovenian producer (about 300 cases per year), who also caught my attention. I could only score 3 bottles, and those are gone. This year's release was gone, before I could order from the distributor/importer, but such is life. For most, I just scratch my head, and wonder what others see in those wines.


                            2. re: Bill Hunt

                              I made a dish tonight using a last bottle of Pinot Grigio, I'm NEVER going to buy any again even tho DH is enamored with a certain winery label that one sees all over the place. I think it was one of the responsible ingredients/culprits for a taste that I didn't like. A great grass-fed chicken,cooked in this - Phew!

                              Reading your post, goodhealth, just now - The winery that DH is smitten with as far as Pinot Grigio is concerned, yep, it is Santa Margherita.

                              1. re: Rella

                                sigh. they've really cornered the market in this country, which is too bad. i suspect you'd really enjoy the Pinot Grigio from Livio Felluga. it's one of my favorites, and it'll only set you back a few bucks more than the SM.

                                1. re: goodhealthgourmet

                                  That is a new producer to me. Will keep an eye open for it.

                                  PG is one varietal, that I do try, but one, that I seldom enjoy.

                                  The same can be said for Chilean wines. I keep looking, and trying, but have found but two (out of 100's, and maybe even 1000's) that I have enjoyed, and would buy again. I am talking entry-level Chilean wines, up to some very expensive, and esoteric ones. Most come to me from importers, or distributors, so they are free. Still, only two would ever grace my purchase list. I have two retailers, who are convinced that they will have the perfect Chilean wines for me, and fill my cart with free "samples." To date - well no dice on all but a very few.

                                  When I do find, either a PG, or a Chilean wine, that I appreciate, I make note, and try to find again. I keep my mind open, and sample, but find that most are not worth my drinking, even with the "ideal" foods.

                                  Just my personal way of thinking,


                                    1. re: Rella

                                      i agree with Hunt re: Casa Lapostolle in general, with one exception - their Clos Apalta, a blend comprised primarily of Carmenère, is absolutely worth trying. otherwise, Altair & Almaviva are two labels i'd suggest if you're interested in Chilean wines.

                                      1. re: Rella

                                        I have tried many. I have also done several dinners with Doña Alexandra Marnier Lapostolle beside me, and have yet to be impressed. I have several bottles of their wines in the cellar, and will hold off comments, until those are consumed, but their wines are not the Chilean wines, that I would buy again.


                                  1. re: Rella

                                    I see that one, all over the place. It is a very popular "restaurant label," and shows up at many airline "clubs." I have tasted it, for maybe 20 years, and just wonder how it sells so much, and often for a significant price. I just do not "get it."

                                    Personally, I want wines with some sort of character, and one, that returns something to me. That one is just wet, IMHO. Still, it sells a ton, so someone must love it, though I cannot imagine whey.


                                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                                      I have bought Lapostolle Merlot they sell at Costco continuously for some years now, but have gotten away from doing so - it doesn't seem to live up to the $17.99 a bottle that I'd rather use that money to try something else.

                                2. re: goldangl95

                                  I wondered how this thread could go so far without someone saying "grapefruit". That's what I look for in a NZ Sauvingnon Blanc. To me it means you get good fruit and aroma, but also mouthwatering acidity (as the former WSJ wine writers used to say) that makes it so nice. I'm horrified that the wretched name of Pinot Grigio was evoked by the thought of grapefruit ! ;-) I'm sure there are some nice ones out there, but I've never had a drinkable one, and I have no idea why the same demographic that guzzled sickie-sweet pink zinfandel now guzzle the sourest mash around.

                                  So, forgive the rant, and give 3 Brooms a try, my favorite Marlborough SB.

                                  1. re: danna

                                    I guess that you missed my second post, in this thread then:

                                    <<The perceived acid (lemon, grapefruit, and maybe lime) is what I like in many SB's, as they work well with many lighter seafoods - "grapefruit" less, than lemon or lime, IMO.

                                    When one adds the "grass," or "damp hay," things might get off a bit, but not always.

                                    With NZ SB's, I usually find heavy grapefruit (not so food-friendly, as lemon, or lime), and "damp hay." That often relegates them to the "sipper" variety, where some Cal-SB's, Loire SB's and Bdx. SB's go better.>>



                                    1. re: Bill Hunt

                                      No, I saw it...that's what I meant: it took almost 20 posts before somebody finally said it. That's the first word that comes to my mind when I hear NZ SB.

                                      If I may go astray from the topic for a sec...Bill, is Conumdrum still your house white? A long-time fave of mine, but does it seem to be getting sweeter?

                                      1. re: danna

                                        Ah, gotcha'. While I experience it, my poor wife really notices is, and is not a fan, even as a sipper. I enjoy that aspect, plus the damp hay/grass, but find that the grapefruit aspect does not pair so well with most of the foods, that we enjoy.

                                        I will pour NZ SB's (less for my lovely young wife), well before a meal, and if SB is a good fit, will move on to domestic (US), or Bdx, or from the Loire, with the food. I like the "lemon" aspects better, than the grapefruit nuances (sometimes not so nuanced) from NZ. I find the Kiwi wines very refreshing, and highly enjoyable, but just much more difficult to pair with most foods.


                                        1. re: Bill Hunt

                                          Have you ever tasted pummelo?

                                          It would be more of a pummelo taste to me. (I don't like it!)

                                          1. re: Rella

                                            Though we do indulge in many tropical fruits (one resort does the "fruit of the day"), that is a new one to me. I need to look into the pummelo fruit.

                                            Now, we have had durian fruit, cheramoyas, atamoyas, and many others, the pummelo is new to me.

                                            Thank you,


                                            1. re: Bill Hunt

                                              In the interest of search purposes, we are talking about cherimoya and pomelo, i presume?

                                              1. re: PolarBear


                                                More than one cares to know.

                                                I experienced first pummelo living in Hawaii. If it 'ain't' good there, it ain't good anywhere.

                                                I've tried it here, mainland, U.S., seeing it at Costco and supermarket chains, but it's just too tasteless for me.

                              2. re: Rella

                                So far, I've enjoyed the best:
                                Matua SB ($9.50@Wegman's) and Whitehaven SB ($14 @ BJ's).

                            3. Rella,

                              i very much enjoy SB from New Zealand. They are by far my favorite white wines to drink. I am relatively new to wine - just getting up to speed so to speak.

                              One New Zealand SB I like very much (more than th Kim Crawford) is the Stoneleigh SB. I believe it is widely available (here in Southern California it can be purchased at BevMo).

                              If you try it, I hope you like it!


                              1 Reply
                              1. re: HB_Jeff

                                a review here.

                                Thanks, I'll look for it when I'm wine shopping again.

                              2. Well, my stash of wines to check out is depleted. Thanks all. Last night I went back to a Kim Crawford, same one as in my original post (I see I spelled Blanc incorrectly, sorry :-)))
                                and I discovered I really don't like it in comparison to the others I bought to try as per your help.
                                Taste test done. Many, many thanks!