2013 Trentham Estate Verdejo

Verdejo not Verdelho. If we can get around the apparent confusion with its Iberian relative, we're drinking Australia's first release Verdejo, the signature white variety favoured in north-west Spain's Rueda (DO) district. The variety is rarely harvested outside this region and is done at night to capture optimal freshness. The historic Trentham Estate on the Murray-Darling near Mildura, who have been pioneering alternative varieties for over a decade, has debuted this vintage onto the Australian wine landscape to great acclaim. A plethora of awards has followed this release including the Best Spanish White Wine and the Best Murray Darling Wine at the 2013 Australian Alternative Varieties Wine Show. 
Verdejo Grapes

The variety's origins are fascinating. Briefly, it was introduced into southern Spain in the 11th Century from North Africa during the Moorish occupation and then spread northward through the migrating Mozarabs to Rueda. Production was interrupted by the phylloxera devastation in the late 19th Century, the trauma of the Spanish Civil War and the decades of stagnation under the Franco regime. Traditionally made as an oxidised sherry like wine, Verdejo's luck turned during the 1970s when Rueda winemakers used the variety to produce fresh, zesty white wines made available at reasonable prices.  

The 2013 Trentham Estate Verdejo is pale yellow in colour. It is not an aromatically challenged wine. There is lifted apple, peach and green apricot aromas with slightly florally, grassy notes. Very fresh and attractive on the nose. Golden apples, lime and mineral mid-palate with a kiwi fruit salad back end. Some of the characteristics of its Iberian relative spring to mind. Good acidity, fine sour tannins and balanced richness. Supple and soft-bodied. Delicious drinking.

Verdejo is an underrated variety that could thrive in our warmer regions, let's watch this space. If it is anything like this release from Trentham Estate, with its food-friendly appeal and value-driven price, there won't be any confusion. Liked this wine, it's a great find. 

Source: Winery Sample. Alcohol: 12.0%. Closure: Screwcap. Price: $16.00. Rating: 90+ Points.

2012 Bleasdale Vineyards Langhorne Creek Moscato

Pale lemon, almost white in colour to this light-bodied Moscato from South Australia's Langhorne Creek Region. Made from the Muscat Blanc à Petits Grains variety as it is known in French, it is grown extensively throughout mainland Australia. Muscat Blanc is a member of the noble Muscat family of Vitis Vinifera, appears to be one of the oldest varieties in the world known to the ancient Greeks and Romans who were instrumental in its dissemination.  
This wine exhibits grapefruit, rose petal and musk aromas that segue nicely onto a fine oily texture on the palate. Fragrantly perfumed, fresh and clean. Entry is all rose petal and grapey, citrus fruit. There are nuances of over ripe peach. The slightly carbonated character and crisp citrus acidity balance the wine's semi-sweet, fruity flavours. Soft spritzy finish. Well made and appealing.

Didn't think I'd enjoy this, but wonders never cease in the world of wine. Serve chilled as either an aperitif or digestif. Your call.  

Source: Winery Sample. Alcohol: 6.5%. Closure: Screwcap. Price: $15.00.
Rating: 90 PointsWebsite: http://www.bleasdale.com.au/