Wednesday, July 1, 2009
Another English Beauty!
In the name of research, I drove down to Wickham vineyards located in a very green and lush part of Hampshire today. Despite the fact that this was my first trip driving alone on the left hand side (an achievement I am very proud of), it was a very enjoyable visit. Had a long chat with the winemaker and vineyard manager, William Maitland Biddulph, about all kinds of opportunities and challenges facing the English wine industry. William is truly passionate about his wines and thinks English wine is starting to reach a new ‘era’ where boutique wineries, such as Wickham, is taking over and the ‘hobby’ winemakers are on their way out. The good thing about this is that we’ll hopefully have committed winemakers such as William, who has not only been in the trade for 27 years but also trained and worked as a winemaker in New Zealand for 5 years, in charge of supplying some delicious wines grown not far from our homes. Anyhow, had a glass (two actually) of the Wickham Fumé 2008 in the garden this evening and it was a delightfully refreshing tipple. Crisp with a bit of body and plenty of citrus fruit character, this Bacchus/Reichensteiner blend is yet more evidence that English winemaking is a force to be reckoned with!