Savouring the good things in life – reasons to try English wine

PUBLISHED: 10:38 28 October 2020

English wine drinkers say it is unlike anything you can get in the supermarket. Picture: Mark Elliott

English wine drinkers say it is unlike anything you can get in the supermarket. Picture: Mark Elliott

Archant

English wine is gaining in popularity and this winter could be just the time to try a few.

When trying English wine, Jonathan suggests you 'take your time to savour the wine'. Picture: CorkkWhen trying English wine, Jonathan suggests you 'take your time to savour the wine'. Picture: Corkk

Corkk, which celebrates the emergence of high quality English wine by curating just a small selection of wines each month, employs a Master of Wine to handpick its bottles.

Founder Jonathan Piggins explains why it is important to support local producers and outlines some of the exciting developments in the world of English wine.

Q: Tell us a little about your Master of Wine?

'Our sparkling wines are consistently world class.' Picture: Corkk'Our sparkling wines are consistently world class.' Picture: Corkk

Clive Barlow has been a Master of Wine for 20 years and has a wealth of experience, especially in English wine. Among other things, he has been the Director of Education at the Institute of Masters of Wine, a panel judge at the International Wine Challenge, a senior judge at the Decanter World Wine awards and founded the Canterbury Wine Festival. He selects what he considers the best, most characterful, English wines – just six each month.

Q: How does English wine differ from other wines?

It is distinctive, interesting and has a real depth of flavour - our customers are constantly saying they don’t find anything like it in the supermarket. This is down to the skill of the winemaker and, as a relatively new wine producing country, there is a tremendous amount of creativity, leading to a whole host of excellent, different wines. Our cool climate and perfect terroir ensure our sparkling wines are consistently world class but just as excitingly, our still white and rosé wines are also beginning to be recognised worldwide.

Q: Is English wine being recognised more abroad as well?

Yes, exports are on the rise, especially to Nordic countries and the Far East. We are increasingly winning medals at international wine awards (155 medals at the Decanter World Wine Awards) and very fact that the Champagne houses are buying up swathes of land in south-east England demonstrates show good conditions in England are for producing world class wines.

Q: Why is it more expensive than some other wines?

English wine is not mass produced, so doesn’t have the economies of scale, but, on the flip side, you get unique, characterful wines rather than bland supermarket wines - much more enjoyable! Tax and duty don’t help (nearly £5 of a £10 bottle of wine goes to the Exchequer) and, unlike established wine regions, we are only just putting in the infrastructure, so investment needs to be paid back.

Q: How would you advise someone to select an English wine?

Great question! If you know what type of wine you like, say a Sauvignon Blanc, then selecting a Bacchus wine, which has similar floral notes, would be a great place to start. Or, if you are curious and adventurous, try something that you don’t normally drink, such as an Orange wine or a Pinot Meunier. Take the same approach with a sparkling wine- try a Blanc de Blancs and some of our sparkling rosés are just delicious. Whatever the case, go with an open mind, take your time and savour what you are drinking.

Q: What would be your top six English wines for this autumn/winter?

The Wine Garden of England has some fabulous fizz and stunning still wines, which can be bought together in a case. These include Chapel Down Kit’s Coty Bacchus, Simpsons Canterbury Rose Sparkling Rosé, Gusbourne Blanc de Blancs 2014, Squerryes Brut 2016, Biddenden Ortega 2017 and Balfour Chardonnay Springfield Chardonnay 2018.

Q: Which English wine would make a great Christmas present?

To spoil someone, a bottle of Gusbourne 2014 Blanc de Blancs or Simpsons Roman Road Chardonnay 2019 (the 2018, sadly all gone, won Best in Show at the Decanter World Wine Awards). For something different and surprising, the Litmus Orange Bacchus.

Q: Which English wine should we look out for next year?

I will be looking out for more great still wines - English wine has come such a long way in a short time - and it will be interesting to see how good our red wines can be, especially Pinot Noir.

For more information visit www.corkk.co.uk, call 0330 1331945 or email info@corkk.co.uk.

More from Food & Drink

Thursday, November 26, 2020

Dr Trouble is offering the chance to win a set of their all natural limited edition African Lemon Chilli Sauce and their limited edition African Double Oak Smoked Chilli Sauce – 25 sets up for grabs

Read more
Thursday, November 5, 2020

Get everything you need to keep everyone fed and watered throughout the Christmas period or pick up a gift or two from these great Kent producers

Read more
Wednesday, October 28, 2020

English wine is gaining in popularity and this winter could be just the time to try a few.

Read more
Tuesday, October 27, 2020

Here’s something for all ages at our Halloween supper – the cocktail can be adjusted to be alcohol free for the kids | Words: Julie Friend - Photos: Julie Friend

Read more
Friday, October 23, 2020

With its wealth of culture, vibrant shopping areas and enticing eateries, Canterbury and its surroundings have much to tempt locals and visitors at this time of year.

Read more
Thursday, October 22, 2020

We are delighted to announce the finalists for the Kent Life Food & Drink Awards 2020! Congratulations to our wonderful finalists!

Read more
Friday, October 9, 2020

No Sunday is complete without a roast dinner, and in the glorious county of Kent you’ll be spoilt for choice with fantastic places to go. We have picked 12 great places where you can indulge in a roast with all the trimmings

Read more
Tuesday, September 8, 2020

It’s that time again, the Kent Life Food & Drink Awards are open for nominations

Read more
Tuesday, August 18, 2020

From saving money to helping the environment, there are many reasons to embrace shopping local

Read more
Tuesday, August 11, 2020

Get a half price meal at these great Kent restaurants, pubs and cafes with the government’s #EatOutToHelpOut scheme

Read more
Kent Life Food & Drink awards. Open for entries.

Subscribe or buy a mag today


subscription ad


Follow us on Twitter


Like us on Facebook


Local Business Directory

Search For a Car In Your Area

Comments have been disabled on this article.

Latest from the Kent Life