The Rise of the English Wine: The Best English Sparkling Wines to drink this Autumn
Most of us love cradling a glass of wine paired with a delicious meal, good conversation or both! Nowadays you don’t have to go far to grab a decent tipple.
For a long time only a handful of countries were taken seriously in their production of wine, but popularity and quality has grown and the net has been thrown wider. English wine has been hitting the headlines for a few years now, but its reputation just keeps on growing. From record harvests and production to English wine being served in place of Champagne at both the BAFTAs and Wimbledon in 2015, people are starting to take the revolution seriously.
But if you’re new to English wine, how do you know where to start? Matt Hutchinson of English wine specialists, Bowland Wines, tells us the best English Wines to enjoy this autumn.
Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut – £26.95
Camel Valley have embodied in this sparkling rosé, a distinct Englishness that makes it very different from mainstream wines. As well as being one of my personal choices, it has won a host of international awards and is a firm favourite of many wine critics and English wine aficionados.
It is perfect for autumn thanks to its zesty and spicy finish, which makes it slightly warming and delivers the cosy feel that is often needed in the British autumn weather.
Based in the heart of Cornwall, Camel Valley are doing something a little bit different and are winning awards globally for both their still and sparkling wines. With a distinctly English spin on the traditional fizz and not always using the classic Champagne grapes, Camel Valley’s wines are truly exceptional.
Nyetimber Classic Cuvée – £36.95
Never mind just for autumn, this is one of the best English sparkling wines to drink at any time.
Nyetimber is one of English Wine’s best known brands. With vineyards in Hampshire and East Sussex and growing only the three traditional Champagne grapes of Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay, Nyetimber’s focus is solely on producing world-class sparkling wine.
Their Classic Cuvée is Chardonnay led with a perfect balance and an incredible structure and depth, this is a wine that is sure to impress in any situation. The fizz is made up of a lot of tiny bubbles to keep your tongue tingling for longer!
Ridgeview Blanc de Noir – £32.95
This rather punchy sparkler has a stronger flavour than most, which makes it the perfect partner for autumn and winter meals such as roasts and curries. It finds the perfect balance of fruitiness and freshness that only comes with true class.
Being made from only red grapes, it has a quite distinctive flavour that will get your taste buds longing for more.
Based in East Sussex, Ridgeview’s focus is solely on sparkling wines, boasting a range of 10 different wines, each with its own unique flavour and structure.
Not into sparkling? Try something still.
England isn’t as famed for its red wines as it is for its white and sparkling, but it’s an area that is definitely coming into its own. Gusbourne’s Pinot Noir (£21.95) is an exceptional example. With a Silver Medal at the 2015 International Wine & Spirits Competition, it is definitely one to try. If you’re into rosé wine, try Denbies Chalk Ridge Rosé (£12.50) – it’s fruity with a hint of pepper, perfect for long, cosy evenings.
So now you have no excuse but to sit back and raise a glass to the rise of the English wine – a legacy in the making.