Owen Elias, of English Terroir, offers one of his regular updates on goings on in his world of winemaking consultancy, including his work at Hush Heath Estate:
Snowy dormant vines at on of Hush Heath Estate's vineyard sites
‘Having skulked in the winery for the last couple of months doing what winemakers do, it is time to venture into vineyard territory. The orchards at Hush Heath are all but finished and the team has moved into the vines….’
Read more from Owen’s blog here
Tuesday 12th July, saw a visit to London for the annual UKVA Wine of the Year Awards…
Hosted by Lord Montagu of Beaulieu, the lunch and tasting of the winning wines takes place in the Cholmondeley Room with its riverside terrace at the House of Lords. I think I have been coming here for at least 15 years and witnessed the darker days of the English wine industry as well as its current renaissance as the next big thing.
For the last few years, sparkling wines have dominated the Gold Medals and Trophies, this year with a change of judges and a couple of absentees (most notably Nyetimber, which is a shame because their Rose 2007 is a fantastic wine), still wines, mainly made from Bacchus seem to have impressed their palates and dominated the tasting table.
On the sparkling wine front, youthfulness seems to have been the over-riding criteria in an interesting and surprising set of results, the RidgeView 2000 Blanc de Blancs, the overall winner was the oldest wine by 8 years and tasted as fresh and young as any. Four other sparkling wines won Gold: one from 2008 , Hindleap Rosé from Bluebell; the other three from 2009: Camel Valley Brut and Pinot Noir, and Plumpton’s The Dean Brut NV. Certainly with the demand for English sparkling wine at an all time high, wineries have been releasing their wines earlier, they are more aromatic and English, relying less on the extended lees ageing and more on fruit than in previous years.
By Owen Elias, English Terroir