The first Friday in May is International Sauvignon Blanc Day. There is a theory that if each of the widely commercialised varieties gets its own 24-hour slot on centre stage more will be sold — not just on the day in question, but for the other 364 days of the year. So it’s not like Valentine’s Day, which is a one-off chance to sell cards, flowers and tables-for-two in restaurants. 

I’m not sure whether the theory has ever been tested, though producers getting together and agreeing to wave a cultivar flag for a limited time cannot do much harm. However, for the southern hemisphere it’s all a little silly: we get to drink sauvignon in autumn (in other words, the European spring), rosé in the dead of winter and red wines when the ambient daily temperatures are in the mid-30s...

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