Digby Leddin – Winemaker
Digby Leddin, the winemaker at RiverBank Estate in the Swan Valley, shares with The Yum List some stories behind the scenes and some of his most memorable food and wine pairings.
What do you do and how did you get into the industry?
I’m RiverBank’s Winemaker. I make wine! I got into oenology through viticulture, and into viticulture through horticulture. Completely unrelated but I got into horticulture post journalism.
Share with us an interesting story from behind the scenes.
Eric (owner) likes to pretend he is the winemaker to anyone attractive at the cellar door.
What’s the best part of your job?
The wine industry is a great leveller. The best part is when an individual in a tin shed in the middle of nowhere gets up to beat a multinational company at a national wine show.
What makes the Swan Valley unique?
Its history. The Croatian, Italian migrants. Its fortified wines. Its proximity to Perth. Mostly its people.
What’s one of your favourite experiences in the Swan Valley?
Tasting fortified from the barrel, made by Jack Mann in the late 1930s.
Share with us a memorable moment in your winemaking journey?
Being awarded the Dr John Gladstone Trophy for the Best & Most Regional Distinctive Wine for a 2005 Swan Valley Verdelho.
The perfect day off would involve…
Chilled Rebellious Rose 2018 and a hammock watching the sunset over the ocean!
A day in the life of a winemaker is…
varied. You are either knee-deep in grape skins or talking to the public about them, and everything in-between.
What do you do for fun?
What’s something you’d like guests to know about RiverBank?
That it is a small, family-owned business that genuinely invests and believes in the Swan Valley’s future. It is grown here, made here, bottled here and consumed here!
What has been one of your most memorable food and beverage pairings?
Shiraz-Viognier with red wine seafood risotto.
What’s your view on the wine industry in Swan Valley?
It is going through a renaissance. Alternative varieties or varieties better suited to our region are changing the face of the landscape. Being true to ourselves and making wines that are great to drink. Young guns bringing enthusiasm, embracing change and making cracking-good wines
What’s in store for you in the upcoming months?
Spring means spraying, bottling and wedding season. We will be crazy busy. The show circuit head-on and hopefully sell a serious amount of booze because before we know it, vintage time will be back around!