Wine of the Week – February 24, 2012
Meonhill Réserve Brut
If you’re a regular reader of this site, you’ll know I love English sparkling wine. This is actually the fourth one I’ve had as a Wine of the Week; I’m constantly impressed by the quality coming out of the country. Many people still have no idea that England produces wine, but you can feel this is changing when even the Daily Mail are talking about it.
2012 will be the year of English fizz. There are producers really pushing out strong brands – like Ridgeview, Hush Heath and Nyetimber – and they’ve got the quality in the wine to back them up. The Olympics come to London later this year and it’s a perfect opportunity to give a worldwide market a taste of English wine.
The Meonhill Réserve Brut is made in Hampshire, by a French winemaker. He’s cloned the grape varieties from his vineyards in Champagne and brought them over to England; the wine is made in the same method too. This is a rich sparkling wine that’s full of flavour: you get the yeasty bread-like character of many Champagnes, along with apricots, lime and caramel.
Unfortunately Meonhilll (£27) is not cheap, but when you compare to this a standard bottle of Moët (£30+) you’re actually getting a superior wine for less money. If you’re in London, then stop by the Wine Pantry shop near Borough Markets and try a glass before you buy. Borough Markets is a great place to buy local produce and now’s the time to add local wine to the shopping list.
Colour: White (sparkling)
Made from: Chardonnay and pinot noir
Say it: Shar-duh-nay / pee-no nwahr
Made in: Hampshire, England
Drink with: Seafood
Priced at: £26.99
Buy from: Wine Pantry