2010 Salena Estate Ink Series Bianco d'Alessano

There is always pleasure involved when you experience and enjoy something new for the first time. Without stating the bleeding obvious, I was thinking more along the lines of reading a book, hearing a piece of music, eating at a new restaurant or in particular drinking a bottle of wine!

It is all the more enjoyable when it happens to be a wine made from a rare grape variety that you have never heard of or experienced. With plantings at Loxton in South Australia's Riverland Region, Salena Estate is the only winery in Australia that produces wine from the Bianco d'Alessano variety. With a triple trophy haul at the recent Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show, they should justifiably be proud of their 2010 vintage. It is an absolutely delicious drop!

Puglia is the stiletto 'heel' of Italy's boot and the region where this white grape variety originates. Historically, grapes and especially white wines from Puglia have gone under the radar, used in blends, for bulk wines and to make vermouth. Consequently, they were not taken seriously. Heavy Pugliese reds like Primitivo and Negromaro have had the limelight. Yet almost twenty percent of Italy's wines come from this region in the south-east, vying with Sicily as Italy's top producer. It is now the turn of the whites to grab some headlines and what I'm predicting is that southern Italian white varietals will be the next big thing on the Australian wine landscape.

Winemakers are now growing emerging varieties such as Vermentino, Fiano, Greco di Tufo and Bianco d'Alessano in Australia's warmer wine growing regions as a response to changing global weather patterns and earlier picking times. Whereas some grapes do not tolerate heat well, the ability of these particular varieties is renown for retaining that all important natural acidity until harvest. As Bianco d'Alessano is a late ripening grape, holding that crucial acidity level augurs well for the quality of the wine.

As the accolades acknowledged, the Salena Estate Bianco d'Alessano is a quality wine. In the glass it is pale straw yellow in colour. On the nose lovely nectarine and peach aromatics pop out as though you are about to eat a fresh fruit salad. Some citrus, delicate florals and minerality. On the palate a smoky citrus acidity supports the stone fruits. A good weight overall to the wine that finishes crisp and clean. Perfect as an appetiser but would really go well with fish. Do yourself a favour and broaden your tasting experience. An exciting discovery for the summer. 

Source: Winery Sample. Rating: 91 Points. Website: http://www.salenaestate.com.au/

No comments:

Post a Comment