Three leading English sparkling wines: Nyetimber, Black Chalk and Rathfinny

Did a compare and contrast with three of the top names in English sparkling wines. These aren’t prestige cuvées, but they show just how good this category is at the top end these days.

Rathfinny Blanc de Noirs Brut 2018 Sussex, England
12% alcohol. Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier, fermented in stainless steel, disgorged January 2022. Fruity and expressive with lovely marmalade and toast notes, lively citrus, and cherry and apple. Nice combination of brightness and richness with subtle toasty, crystalline fruits, but the focus is on the fruit. Lovely wine. 92/100

Nyetimber Classic Cuvée NV England
12% alcohol. Purity is the key here. This is a lovely balanced wine with a citrus core and some creaminess to the texture, with mandarin, apricot and almond notes in the background. Has refinement, a rounded texture and a crisp lemony finish. Quite exciting. 92/100

Black Chalk Classic 2018 Hampshire, England
12% alcohol. This is a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir, with the base wines raised in oak. Really bright and vivid with good acidity, but really harmonious, showing lemon, green apple and pear fruit with just a hint of marzipan, and tangy grapefruit leading to a long fresh finish. Such a precise, focused wine. 93/100

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