Our choice this month is the award-winning English wine, Three Choirs Coleridge Hill 2016, which was awarded a bronze medal at the 2018 Sommelier Wine Awards for its ‘clean, green mineral aromas and mineral freshness on the palate, with some herbal, grass and nettle notes’.
This dry, delicate white wine made from Phoenix, Madeleine Angevine and Huxelrebe grapes, has subtle, floral aromas of elderflower and nettle combine with fruity, peachy tones for a crisp, bone dry, satisfying mouthful. Unoaked, it goes brilliantly with seafood and chicken and is a fine aperitif.
Each of the wines is produced at the Three Choirs single estate vineyard, nestled in the Gloucestershire hills. One of the oldest vineyards in England, the 75 acres are decorated with vines dating back to 1973; when local wine retailer Alan McKechnie started harvesting the vines on his small fruit farm.
Since then Three Choirs has developed a unique process of growing modern grape varieties side by side with world-renowned grapes, such as Pinot Noir and Bacchus, whilst adopting cultivation methods from the world’s most modern winemakers. Award-winning winemaker Martin Fowke has closely studied the techniques of New World producers to tailor the winemaking processes to the prevailing English climate.
Last year saw 250 tonnes of fruit harvested to produce 300,000 bottles and, thanks to the vineyards unique microclimate its single variety and blends have been the bearer of numerous awards over the last four decades. It’s no surprise that demand has grown for these wines.
The star of the show may be Coleridge Hill 2016 but the food menu at The Samling holds its weight alongside it. It’s seasonal and comforting, with a handful of choices for each course that include Pig and Eel, with White Asparagus, Wild Garlic and an Asparagus cream sauce; or Sea Bass, Oysters, Fennel, and Cod Roe Taramasalata.
Simply, it’s a complex, skilfully blended wine that is incredibly great value and temptingly easily quaffable.