Wine from Derbyshire may seem bizare but we can assure it’s wonderful! This Champagne-esque fizz is made with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir made in the traditional method. It undergoes malolactic fermentation and spends 18 months on the lees giving it a lovely balance of freshness, toastiness and a touch of creaminess.
Renishaw Hall, Derbyshire, England.
Please note: technical information such as vintage and ABV are subject to change. For the most up-to-date information, please get in touch.
Derbyshire’s very own wine. Yes, Derbyshire! Grapes for this wine are grown a mere 25 minute drive from the shop in the attractive Renishaw Hall and Gardens. Renishaw Hall’s vineyard was planted by Alexandra Sitwell’s father, the late Sir Reresby, in 1972. Up until 1986 it was certified the most northern vineyard in the world, 53 degrees 18 minutes north (this has now changed with a vineyard in Norway now taking the crown). Renishaw Hall don’t tend to or make the wine, that’s up to Kieron Atkinson, the head of The English Project.
The English Wine Project is a business of two parts: one part focuses on making delicious wines and ciders using grapes from Renishaw Hall and apples from Herefordshire and the other part is consultancy agency that offers advice and guidance to some of the UK’s best wineries. Kieron has been in the business for many years now- not only has he consulted across the UK, he studied at Plumpton and trained in Champagne.
Vines are grown in a lovely walled garden that helps retain the heat. Vines are also are leaf stripped and shoot thinned giving the fruit maximum exposure to sunlight to increase lactic acid and decrease malic acid resulting in ripe fruit. Fruit is left on the vine for the longest period possible ensuring super ripe fruit- their Northern location means that the summers aren’t the warmest! During the harvest, the fruit is all hand-picked ensuring that no bruised or non-perfect fruit enters the press. The picked fruit is then taken directly to the winery and pressed that day.
A blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. Grapes are whole bunched pressed but not crushed or destemed as Kieron finds it can lead to off flavours. The juice is allowed to stand for 24 hours before being racked off and it then undergoes a long fermtation for around 3 weeks. Fermentation is temperature controlled but malolactic fermentation does take place to add texture and richness to the wine. Once fermentation has finished, the wine is racked off its gros lees before being left to settle for 8 weeks. It is then bottled around the March after the harvest to undergo secondary fermentation. The wine spends 18 months on its fine lees after before being disgorged and having the dosage adjusted.
Notes of lemon zest, apple, elderflower and citrus fruits jump out at you all of which is followed by biscuit, custard cream, doughnut and cream. the malolactic fermentation adds a great creamy texture to the wine but there’s still fresh fruits that make it beautifully balanced. Hannah best describes it as a less sweet lemon cheesecake!
Drink this as you would Champagne- have with canapés, h’orderves, with breakfast, for a celebration, for any occasion that is suitable!