In 1980, Andrew Quady’s discovery of underused Orange Muscat grapes in Reedley, California, led him to make a wine that celebrated the intense aromas and spicy fruit flavours of the grapes. “Essensia” refers to the idea that the wine contains the very essence of the grape. In Italy the variety is known as Moscato Fior d’Arancio: Orange Blossom Muscat. Essensia astonished the wine world. At the time, sweet wines were looked down upon. The idea that a distinctive Orange Muscat Varietal wine could be made in the San Joaquin Valley was a revelation.
The Quady winery is based near Fresno in California, and rarely one that specialises in the production solely of sweet, fortified and aperitif style wines. This wine’s life began in 1980, when Andrew Quady discovered a small planting of the little known grape variety – that year’s harvest grapes becoming the first ‘Essensia’. Leaving his firework making career behind, his wine proved a dazzling showstopper in its own right, quickly gained popular appeal on the international stage.
100% Orange Muscat.
The Orange Muscat grape is named so because it produces an aroma reminiscent of orange blossom. Harvested grapes are crushed, chilled and macerated. Brief fermentation is arrested by the addition of neutral grape brandy, preserving the aroma of the fresh, ripe grapes. The wine is aged for about 3 months in used – mostly French oak – barrels.
Essensia and dessert are sensational together. Pair with chocolate, almond, peach, apricot and apple desserts, or cheesecake. Dip in biscotti, moisten cakes, and add to truffles. Drink it alongside fresh goat cheese and enjoy the interplay between the sweet and sour flavours.
Suitable for vegetarians & vegans.
In the Press
91 Points – Decanter 2019
92 Points – International Wine & Spirits Competition 2019
Gold – Tastings.com, 2018
Bronze – International Wine and Spirit Competition 2015