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Home Winners > Winners 2015 > England

Winner Details

English Sparkling Wine

2015: Gold 5 Silver 7 Bronze 7 Commended 6
2014: Gold 3 Silver 2 Bronze 7 Commended 7

A category on a serious roll. As recently as 2013, UK fizz picked up only five medals, but there were 16 this year, with nearly as many Golds as for champagne. It is, perhaps, still a hand-sell, but there are signs that this is changing. And with new names (on this evidence) appearing every year, the future is genuinely exciting. Only one question: what to call it? Britpop? English? John Bull Sparkling? Answers on a postcard please…

FOOTNOTE: For English rosés, look in the Other Sparkling Rosé section.

From the Tasting Teams

‘We are a British restaurant, so instead of serving house champagne, we serve English sparkling wine. We try different ones and people react very well when you challenge them to try it instead of champagne.’ Gustavo Medina, Rex Whistler Restaurant

‘You need to have these wines by the glass, selling for £10 or £12, so that people can taste first, then they may move to a bottle.’ Xavier Rousset MS, Texture, 28º-50º

‘I’m a massive lover of English sparkling wine but it’s very difficult to sell in Scotland!’ Debbie Smith, 21212

‘English sparklings are still sommelier sells at the moment, but you need to offer good English sparkling wines alongside champagne and give customers the choice.’ Garreth Ferreira, Launceston Place

‘The price of English sparkling and champagne can be similar, so they need to be separated on the list so that the English sparkling has a place that gives it special attention. There are some very good wines and they are putting themselves at the same level as champagne.’ Caroline Brangé, 28º-50º Mayfair

‘[The Digby] had a nice luminosity and balance, a persistence and complexity of flavour. A very good benchmark for English sparkling wine, with the complexity you’d associate with champagne.’ Stuart Skea, Champany Inn & Wine Cellars

‘A good, fresh, crisp flight that would wake you up, with lovely fresh acidity.’ Xavier Rousset MS, Texture

Award winners

Found 25 wines

Sparkling: England

High Clandon, The Succession Cuvée, Brut 2009, Surrey, England

Gold medal winner

Sheer complexity won High Clandon Gold. 'There's a rich, savoury length after a fresh citrus lead-in,' said Chris Wood of Chelsea Vintners. 'Autolytic, toasty notes on the nose lead to a fresh, lively palate, full of interesting flavours. Serious and very long. Match with oysters Kilpatrick,' advised team leader Angela Reddin.

£23.00 High Clandon Estate Vineyard

Digby Fine English, Reserve Brut 2009, ,, England

Gold medal winner

Another gong for this pleasurable sparkler. 'Beautifully complex on the nose, with white flowers and complex autolytic notes hinting at the bright fruit on the palate. Elegant and charming, with finesse and panache,' said Stuart Skea of Champany Inn & Wine Cellars, suggesting a food match of simply cooked turbot with a white sauce.

£26.07 Coe Vintners

Wiston, Blanc de Blancs 2010, South Downs, England

Gold medal winner Critics Choice

The sheer complexity of this wine appealed from the start. 'Plenty of mousse, a fresh mix of citrus and biscuit on the nose, plus a richly flavoured palate, with creamy notes and good freshness throughout,' said team leader Richard Bampfield MW. 'Quite like a Cramant Champagne, with lots of chalk and bite,' added Chris Wood of Chelsea Vintners, concluding: 'Very versatile.'

£20.97 Wiston Estate Winery

Squerryes, Brut 2010, Kent, England

Gold medal winner

A mix of peach, tart apricot, delicate pear and light tangerine flavours illustrates the inviting complexity of this wine. 'With good acidity, this has notes of fresh herbs, pineapple, lime and lemons,' said Gustavo Medina of Rex Whistler Restaurant. 'Pleasant aperitif style – fantastic value,' concluded team leader Angela Reddin.

£18.87 Squerryes

Sugrue Pierre, Brut 2011, Sussex, England

Gold medal winner

A deft blend of fruit, floral and spicy notes plus a great finish gave Sugrue Pierre Gold. Rich, with a creamy butterscotch character on the nose, the palate is dry and mineral-driven, with good weight and a vibrant finish. 'Crunchy, toasty red fruits, the palate is bold and round, with good persistence and length,' said team leader Angela Reddin.

£26.31 Hallgarten & Novum Wines

Bluebell Vineyard Estates, Hindleap Blanc de Blancs 2010, East Sussex, England

Silver medal winner

A high Silver for this rich, golden sparkler, with its fresh style, orchard notes of apples and pears, a nicely balanced palate and a hint of spice on the finish. 'Good value for money, too,' said George Bergier of The Victorian Chop House Company, suggesting white meat dishes with mushroomy sauces as the match of choice.

£22.07 Amathus, Ellis of Richmond

Hattingley Valley, Blanc de Blancs 2010, Hampshire, England

Silver medal winner

Pale in colour, with a good mousse, sherbet notes on the nose lead to soft lemon, pineapple and citrus flavours on the palate alongside light floral and blossom. 'Vibrant, with white stone fruits and gentle acidity,' said consultant Michael Harrison.

£27.82 Liberty Wines

Chapel Down, Three Graces 2009, Kent, England

Silver medal winner

'Interesting on the nose, with complex flavours of peach and flowers, this is fresh, zesty, clean and lightly spicy, with a persistent finish,' said Andrea Fasan of La Petite Maison, concluding: 'A gourmet style.' 'Good all rounder,' said team leader Angela Reddin. 'Scallops and monkfish.'

£14.95 Matthew Clark, Chapel Down

Ridgeview, Grosvenor, Blanc de Blancs Brut 2011, Sussex, England

Silver medal winner

'Delicate and floral on the nose, with lightly toasted notes alongside flavours of pear, apple, bread and butter, and citrus, this is elegant and powerful, with good depth and a long finish,' said Caroline Brangé of 28°-50° Mayfair.

£22.19 Enotria&Coe

Hush Heath Estate, Balfour, 1503, Classic Cuvée NV, Kent, England

Silver medal winner

Well integrated, with good breadth on the palate, and strudel, lemons, apricots and flowers on the nose. 'This has excellent underlying structure and a lovely balance,' said team leader Angela Reddin, 'Try with fish in pastry.'

£19.59 Bibendum

Redfold Vineyards, Ambriel, Classic Cuvée NV, West Sussex, England

Silver medal winner

Much promise from Redfold's maiden vintage. Yeasty lemon aromas lead to a citrus-infused palate, with floral and mineral notes. 'Rich and hedonistic in style, this has good depth of flavour, balanced acidity and a fresh finish,' said team leader Richard Bampfield MW.

£19.20 Triage Wines

Wiston, Blanc de Noirs NV, South Downs, England

Silver medal winner

With a faintly pink hue alluding to its red fruit heritage, ths sports bready notes, green apple and lemon water flavours. 'Brisk acidity and good pink fruit, alongside good value,' said team leader Sarah Jane Evans MW, adding: 'Give it time to integrate.'

£14.50 Wiston Estate Winery

Greyfriars, Blanc de Blancs Brut 2011, Surrey, England

Bronze medal winner

'With a creamy, citrus nose, this is richly flavoured with plenty of character and a clean citrus finish,' said team leader Richard Bampfield MW. Carlos Ferreira of New Street Wine Shop noted the fruity palate, lemon sorbet notes and a 'nice long finish'.

£18.00 Greyfriars Vineyard

Court Garden, Classic Cuvée Brut 2011, Sussex, England

Bronze medal winner

Lemon gold in colour, with mineral aromas alongside notes of brioche and biscuit, and a medium-length finish. 'Crunchy and refreshing,' said team leader Sarah Jane Evans MW.

£20.43 Court Garden

Camel Valley, Cornwall Brut 2012, ,, England

Bronze medal winner

More herbal on the nose and palate, this is 'aromatic, vibrant and different in style', said Sandro Lyhs of the Oxo Tower Bar.

£22.45 Matthew Clark

Exton Park, Blanc de Blancs 2011, Hampshire, England

Bronze medal winner

Rhubarb and Bramley apples lead the way on this wine, alongside sourdough notes and a yeasty, autolytic note. 'Super zesty character, with bracingly fresh acidity and a sherbet-like bite,' said Chris Wood of Chelsea Vintners.

£20.00 Exton Park Winery

Wyfold, Brut 2010, Oxfordshire, England

Bronze medal winner

Richly autolytic in style, this has plenty of pastry notes on the nose and an elegant palate with flavours of bruised apple and a smattering of nuts.

£18.50 Direct Wines Production

Redfold Vineyards, Ambriel, Blanc de Noirs NV, West Sussex, England

Bronze medal winner

From Redfold's maiden vintage, this is youthful and light, showing peardrops and apple notes on a refreshingly crisp, dry palate. 'Juicy and zesty, with a precise finish,' said Andrea Fasan of La Petite Maison.

£16.00 Redfold Vineyards LLP

Redfold Vineyards, Ambriel, English Reserve, Demi-Sec NV, West Sussex, England

Bronze medal winner

Off-dry, with honeyed notes of melon and apricot alongside candied notes. 'Typically English, sweetly fruited, this has plenty of flavour,' said team leader Richard Bampfield MW, 'A definite crowd pleaser.'

£20.00 Redfold Vineyards LLP

Hattingley Valley, Classic Cuvée 2010, Hampshire , England

Commended medal winner

£24.02 Liberty Wines

Court Garden, Blanc de Noirs Brut 2010, Sussex, England

Commended medal winner

£21.50 Court Garden

Court Garden, Ditchling Reserve 2010, Sussex, England

Commended medal winner

£22.93 Court Garden

Henners, Vintage Brut 2010, East Sussex, England

Commended medal winner

£18.87 Boutinot

Henners, Reserve Brut 2010, East Sussex, England

Commended medal winner

£21.07 Boutinot

Furleigh Estate, Classic Cuvée 2011, Dorset, England

Commended medal winner


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