All Angels, Classic Cuvée, Enborne, West Berkshire, England, 2014
The rural backwaters of Berkshire aren’t the first place you’d expect to find a vineyard, yet it’s here that new kid on the English wine scene, Mark Darley and his family have chosen to plant 3 hectares of classic sparkling varieties as well as Pinot Gris.
Enborne Vineyards, located in the village of the same name, was planted with the intention of producing exceptional English sparkling wine, set apart due to their distinctive terroir. Planted in 2010 after the land was almost set aside as an Alpaca farm, the vision began to take shape with the inspiration for All Angels coming from the local 12th century parish church. The inaugural 2014 vintage has already started to make some noise, and there’s no doubt that this is a producer to follow...
In 2010 a tentative approach was made to Vine Works. The survey of the land came as a pleasant surprise: great land and soil, great altitude and a perfect south facing slope. So work began. The vines were chosen to be blended for the finest English sparkling wine. Rondo - an early crop, core to the production of sparkling Rosé - Pinot Gris and those classic sparkling wine grapes: Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. The first vineyard to be planted was 2.6 hectares and was followed a few years later by a smaller, 0.5 hectare parcel.
No oak ageing
Light straw gold in colour, beautifully textured, dry, fresh citrus flavoured, with consistent, long lasting bubbles.
If you want to be very british then pair with traditional fish and chips but this works with smoked, oily fish like salmon or trout, as well as crab or lobster salad.
The Drinks Business Global Sparkling Wine Masters 2020
Although bottled under the Enborne Vineyards brand called All Angels, this English sparkling wine is made by respected winemaker Emma Rice at Hattingley Valley– which has a state of the art facility in Hampshire. The grapes however comes from a family-owned vineyard at Church Farm in Enborne, West Berkshire, that was planted in 2010. Gaining a Gold medal, this fizz from the 2014 vintage, dominated by Chardonnay, is delicious and typically English in style. By that I mean it has masses of zesty citrus acidity, along with freshly-sliced apple flavour, along with a complementary note of toasted brown bread. Gold Medal, 2020.
Jancis Robinson 16 Points
Full bottle 1,593 g. Grapes from the private family-owned Enborne Vineyards in Berkshire, between Newbury and Hungerford, first planted in 2010 (with some vines planted later). They have two vineyards, both of gentle south-facing slopes, planted with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris, Meunier and Rondo. Founded by Mark Darley. Winemaking is done at Hattingley by Emma Rice. This cuvée is a blend of 50% Chardonnay, 28% Pinot Noir, 11% Pinot Meunier and 11% Pinot Gris. RS 7 g/l. Bottled May 2015, disgorged July 2021. Fresh-cut-apples nose, but lovely biscuity shortbread on the palate, although the acidity is lemon-strong and driving the wine. Wet-chalk texture framing green peach, ripe gooseberry and sorrel-leaf sorbet. Hint of almond flake on the finish. A whetstone of a sparkler – begging for a creamy crab pâté. 16 Points, TC, May 2022.
Pinot Noir 28%
Other sparkling wine
6 x 75cl