English sparkling wine has been making headlines for a number of years now. Leaving aside the understandable national pride of some U.K. journalists (every country suffers from it) there are some seriously good English sparkling wines – at fairly serious prices too. The success, Irish winemaker Dermot Sugrue reckons, is partly down to low yields enforced by the climate. Limerick-born Sugrue makes a number of excellent sparkling wines for Wiston Estate on the South Downs and for his own label Sugrue Pierre (his wife is a Pierre). All of the wines are made from one or more of the classic Champagne grapes. For the recent Wine Geese tasting held in the Ballymaloe pop-up shop in Brown Thomas Cork, Dermot brought over the Wiston Rosé a delicious strawberry-scented dry wine that I would prefer to many a Champagne. We also tasted his delicious Sugrue Pierre sparkling dry white called ‘The Trouble with Dreams’. This is an impeccably made elegant balanced wine, with a wonderful purity of sophisticated pristine fruit, a toastiness that comes through once opened a few minutes, and a lip-smacking clean dry finish. The 2010 vintage (sadly sold out) garnered ninety-six points, the highest ever score for an English sparkling wine, in the latest edition of Decanter magazine. Let us hope some enterprising Irish importer manages to bag a few cases of Wiston or Sugure Pierre– they deserve a place on our shelves – possibly as the best Irish wine? Or does that honour go to Simon Tyrrell with his two excellent Côtes du Rhône? We also tasted these at the Brown Thomas tasting.
Posted in: BlogLeave a Comment (0) ↓