93

2018 Naia, Rueda

( £11.89, 13.5%, Bentley's Wine Merchants, Blanco & Gomez, Connolly's Wines, Harrogate Wines, John Hattersley Wines, Kwoff, Mill Hill Wines, North & South Wines )

Made from old vines grown at 750 metres in the village of La Seca, this is a brilliant value Verdejo from Bodegas Naia, which tastes every bit as good it looks. Combining unoaked and lightly wooded components, both of them aged on their lees for four months, it has a winning combination of pear and citrus fruit framed by subtle oak spice and a taut, chalky, mineral-edged tang.

BuyDrinking window: 2020-23Similar Wines: £10-15, 90-94, Spain, White, Verdejo
90

2012 Angosto Almendros Sauvignon Blanc/Verdejo, Valencia

( £12.95, 12.5%, Berry Bros & Rudd )

A blend of Sauvignon Blanc and Verdejo from Valencia? Not exactly run of the mill stuff, but this white duo from Spain’s eastern coast is very tasty stuff. It’s ripe and spicy, with sweet vanilla oak, flavours of pear and honeysuckle and a hint of ginger for good measure. Highly unusual, and further confirmation that Spain’s white wines are on a roll. 

BuyDrinking window: 2014-16Similar Wines: £10-£20, 86-90, Spain, White, Verdejo
91

2012 Joc Blanc, Jordi Oliver, Rueda, Rueda

( €8.50, 13% )

An interloper in the tasting (as it comes from Rueda, not Emporda and is made from Verdejo), but it’s made by Jordi Oliver, hence its inclusion here. Made in a rich, slightly oxidative style with a creamy mid palate and flavours of grapefruit and mango and an undertow of tannin. Very complex, with a minerally finish.

 

Similar Wines: £10-£20, 91-95, Spain, White, Verdejo
89

2011 Herdade do Esporão, Verdelho, Vinho Regional Alentejano

( £8.95, 13.5%, The Wine Society )

White wines from the baking plains of southern Portugal are often rather flabby and dull, but this perky number from one of the region’s best producers is anything but, showing tangy acidity, bright, citrus peel flavours and a minerality that wouldn’t look out of place in Chablis. Bring on the seafood. 

BuyDrinking window: 2013-15Similar Wines: £5-£10, 86-90, Portugal, White, Verdejo