Just back from day 1 of the 2011 instalment of the International Sparkling Wine Symposium, held at Denbies wine estate in Dorking, Surrey.
I’m one of the organizing committee, so it was a day on duty, hoping things went well. Did they? Yes, absolutely. It was a great day.
I can’t hope to summarize proceedings adequately here (I’m tired, [...]
There has recently been some debate about whether or not English sparkling wine needs a name, prompted by the release of Coates & Seely’s new fizz, for which they have coined the term Britagne. Here’s my take, delivered in nine points.
It is an important time for English sparkling wine. New vineyards will soon [...]
OK, we all know how good the famous names of English sparkling wine are: the likes of Nyetimber, Ridgeview and Camel Valley.
Well here’s another, less well known name, making some serious sparkling wine: Breaky Bottom. This is the first wine of theirs I have tried, even though they are old timers on the English scene, [...]
This is a top class Kiwi fizz that I’ve never tried before. It has gained some proper complexity from long ageing on the lees, and it’s delicious.
Morton Blanc de Blancs 2000 New Zealand
12.5% alcohol; matured on the lees for seven years. Gold colour. Complex, rich toasty nose is savoury and intense with nice sweet apricot [...]
I suppose I’m guilty of not taking pink fizz seriously enough. Well, in light of today’s date, I’ve opened a couple. I’m trying to pretend that I’m being ironic, but they’re actually quite delicious drinking. The surprise is how good the English fizz is.
Moët & Chandon Rosé Impérial NV
12% alcohol. Pink with an orange hue. [...]
So here it is: the second annual Champagne blind tasting. Brother-in-law William and I taste a range of top Champagnes blind, including three ringers (two of which are from England). We’re assisted by my brother Arthur who plays a cameo role somewhere in the middle. The results are interesting, and for me a little unexpected. [...]
Really like this video from Teusner in Australia’s Barossa Valley. It shows the process of disgorging sparkling Shiraz – but this is the same process used for many sparkling wines and Champagnes. The fact that it’s done by hand here is quite fun. The objective is to freeze the plug of yeast cells from the [...]
Very interested to get a chance to drink this new wine. It’s a pink fizz from one of the UK’s top sparkling wine producers, Nyetimber. This is the first Nyetimber release to be made by winemaker Cherie Spriggs, who joined in 2007. Initially, just 1500 bottles were released; the plan is to make a larger [...]
First day’s judging at the Sparkling Wine Review is underway her at Denbies Wine Estate in Surrey.
It’s a completely new sort of benchmarking exercise, and we’re very excited about it.
This is a crazy, crazy wine, but it really works. It’s a sparkling ice wine.
Inniskillin Vidal Sparkling Ice Wine 2006 Niagara Peninsula, Canada
9% alcohol. Made like an ice wine, with grapes picked at -10 C, this is a bit different: it’s gently sparkling. Gold/bronze in colour, with residual sugar of 230 g/litre, it’s viscous and [...]