For several hundred years now, the Vermentino grape varietal has flourished over several parts of Europe. Although widely thought to have originally come from Spain, the Vermentino grape is now most closely associated with the islands of Sardinia and Corsica, where they are widely grown and are considered an important varietal for the island's economy. Vermentino grapes are particularly popular with vintners due to the fact that they are very easy to cultivate, and are especially resistant to rot and mildew. The vines are vigorous, and produce high yields of a reliable quality. The wines which come from the Vermentino varietal are generally pale yellow in color, high in acidity and pleasantly crisp, with flavors of green apple, lime and other bright citrus fruits.
The Fleurieu Peninsula in southern Australia has been gaining a lot of international attention in recent years due to the wide range of excellent grape varietals which are currently flourishing there, and resulting in superb wines. The Mediterranean style climate allows the grapes to ripen slowly and fully, and express the many features of the excellent terroir which typifies the area. The variation in geological features of the peninsula is one of the key reasons why the wines from Fleurieu vary so greatly, and vintners in the region delight in experimenting with the micro-climates which make up the island's unique features. Today, the region mainly produces Shiraz and Cabernet Sauvignon wines of great character, although there are many varietals currently being grown there very successfully.
Despite much of Australia being covered by dry, arid deserts and bushland, the southern regions of the country and islands such as Tasmania have proved to be ideal for vineyard cultivation and wine production. The fertile soils and brisk oceanic breezes, coupled with the blazing Australian sunshine allow the grapes to grow to full ripeness before a late harvest, resulting in hugely flavorful wines which appeal to a wide international audience. Combine this with the experimental and daring approach Australian wineries have in regards to wine production, and it becomes clear why Australia has relatively quickly become something of a world leader when it come to exporting their produce to Europe and America. The Shiraz and Chardonnay grape varietals have produced the most successful and broadly appreciated results over the decades, however, in more recent years wineries have begun experimenting with a much wider range of grape varietals, demonstrating how Australian wineries are continuing to adapt and develop alongside international palates.