Line 39 is one of five labels owned by Cecchetti Wine, which makes it a sort of Big Wine company brand. In this, the sauvignon blanc can teach the rest of Big Wine a thing or two.
That’s because the Line 39 Sauvignon Blanc ($12, sample, 13%) does something too many Big Wines don’t — offers more than the one flavor that dominates everything else, on the theory that’s all cheap wine consumers want or understand. Instead, it makes the step from the quality $10 wine that it has been over the years to outstanding $10 wine that we don’t have enough of. This may be the best Line 39 sauvignon blanc vintage yet.
Look for muted citrus (lemon-lime) in the front, some tropical fruit in the middle, and a richness that previous vintages didn’t have. This is exactly what quality sauvignon blanc should taste like, regardless of price, and that the citrus is muted puts in squarely in the California style. Plus, the wine doesn’t have any of the bitterness in the back that too many $10 wines expect us to endure as the cost of paying that little.
Highly recommended, and a candidate for the 2016 $10 Hall of Fame (since it’s $10 in many parts of the country). Drink this chilled on its own or with anything with garlic and parsley — grilled shrimp, for instance, or spaghetti olio.