In Bordeaux, the maritime climates of Entre-Deux-Mers, Graves and Pessac-Leognan produce dry wine grapes and Sauternes produces sweet wine grapes in the Loire Valley. The slow maturation of grapes on the vine gives them more time to achieve a balance between acidity and sugar, which is important for the intensity of the wine’s aroma. Because of the importance of terroir in wine production in France, producers pay close attention to the characteristics of the different terroirs.
Sancerre and Pouilly, famous for the richness and complexity of their wines, are also known for the presence of chalk and fossil soils (Kimmeridgian marl). The concentration of fossils in soils creates wines of exceptional richness and complexity in Sancerre and Pouilly. In Bordeaux, where fruitier wines are produced, flint soils produce more vigorous and durable wines. The wines are fruitier and more vigorous than in other places.
The AOC Pouilly Fumé de Pouilly-sur-Loire is dedicated to the city of Pouilly-sur-Loire, on the Loire River. Because of the deposits of flint and limestone, local producers believe that the soil in this town produces a smoky flavor of the wine, which is where the French expression fumé (which means smoky) comes from. Along with semilion, muscadelle and Ugni Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc is one of four white varieties allowed in Bordeaux. It is widely used in the production of blended wines. Château Margaux’s Pavillon Blanc wine is mainly composed of Sauvignon Blanc. To create an acidic wine in the north of the Rhone Valley, Sauvignon Blanc is blended with tresallier.
In the Sauternes region, Sauvignon Blanc grapes are blended with Sémillon to make a late-harvest wine. 5 to 50% of Sauvignon Blanc grapes are blended with Sémillon to make a late-harvest wine. The Premier Cru Supérieur Château d’Yquem has 20% Sauvignon Blanc. The Sauvignon Blanc fruit ripens one or two weeks earlier than the Sémillon fruit, so to preserve its aromatic intensity and flavor, the Sauvignon Blanc fruit is usually isolated from the Sémillon.
It is common practice in Sauternes to plant Sauvignon Blanc grapes at regular intervals with the seed. Because Sauvignon Blanc grapes ripen earlier than Sémillon grapes, many Sauternes producers isolate them to prevent them from losing part of their flavor and aroma.
Along the border with Chablis, AOC Saint-Bris is becoming popular for its production of sauvignon blanc.
The strain has gained preeminence in the Collio Goriziano area of Italy. The Muffato della Sala is one of the main sweet wines in the country, where it is used.
In 2016, there were 600 hectares of Sauvignon Blanc in the DO Rueda, located in Castilla y León. This variety was introduced to the area in 1974 by the Marqués de Riscal winery, which currently covers 70 hectares of the same. In Catalonia there is a small cultivation of Sauvignon Blanc, which currently ranges from 10 to 100 hectares. It can also be found in the DOCa Rioja.