UPDATE FROM THE VINEYARD – NEW WINE, BEHIND THE SCENES
Yesterday we tasted our latest wines to decide what the dosage should be.
We have 2 non-vintage wines. We have taken 75% of the 2015 and 2016 vintages and blended it with 25% of the 2014, which has been held in oaked in barrels for 3 years.Oaking wine: the process of aging wine with oak barrels in order to impart smooth, low tannin flavour, aroma compound to the wines stored. It has been globally recognised that this process is essential in the making of fine wine, some barrels imbued the wine with complex, and pleasing, flavour profiles. Our wine has been held in French Oak Barrels to add character to the finished product, adding ”un certain je ne sais quoi”.
In the testing we had a control l bottle of the basic vintage with no dosage at all and then three other bottles to test for each wine. These 3 had a dosage of 8g per litre, 9g per litre and 10g per litre respectively. It was decided that the lowest dosage of 8g per litre was the best option with both wines after tasting on Zoom with Emma Rice the wine maker from Hattingley Valley, who is making the wine for us.
It was decided that the “2015” would benefit for longer “on cork” so we will release the “2016” and finish the 2015 but leave it “in bond” for at least the rest of the year.
The “2016” will probably be available by June.
This is after it has had the disgorgement process and adjustment of the “dosage”. It will then have to pass the test for PDO for stability as well as quality. PDO is Protected Denomination of Origin. This is an analysis of the wine that confirms its origin, quality and stability and includes a taste test. Both these wines have an alcohol level of 11.5%.
After the wine has been through this process the labels can be printed and the wine will be delivered into our storage, after we have paid the tax on it.
We are very excited by these wines that we think are excellent and look forward to introducing them to you.
Classic Champagne grapes:
- Chardonnay 60%
- Pinot noir 30%
- Pinot meunière 10%
Emma Rice: Head Winemaker at Hattingley Valley is a Plumpton-trained graduate and the first female winemaker to be awarded the prestigious UKVA Winemaker of the Year trophy twice, in 2014 and again in 2016.
Non-vintage wine: A non-vintage wine refers to wines that are produced with grapes or wines from different harvest years
Disgorging: the process of taking the dead lees or sediment out of the bottle, so that when we buy our sparkling wine it is crystal clear.
Dosage: stage before the final corking, the purpose of dosage is to balance the acidity of the wine with additional sugar.