PL Award 1: SILVER - DWWA 2016
Country: United Kingdom Region: Southern England Vintage: 2014
Category: White Wine Color: White
Producer: Stopham Estate
"Stopham Estate is the brainchild of Simon Woodhead, who began his career as an engineer designing parts for Formula 1 cars. Simon established Stopham Estate in 2007, when he planted six hectares of predominantly Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc on the estate, near Pulborough in West Sussex. He vinifies all of his wines in a small winery located in a converted barn on the estate.
Stopham is known locally for its ancient buildings that were recorded in the Domesday Book. The main challenges in the vineyard are the deer that roam the parkland (Simon's first job was to fence the vineyard to protect the vines from damage) and unsurprisingly, the weather. Simon practises sustainable farming and is aided by the south-facing vineyards, which maximise sun exposure and ripening, as well as the proximity of the Stopham farm animals, which provide copious amounts of organic fertiliser to boost the sandy soils.
The Stopham Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc are unique because they are made from predominantly vinifera varieties, rather than hybrids. Simon's wines, like his pristine winery, are pure and precise, and in our opinion some of the best still wines made in England. In addition to the two whites, Simon makes a Rosé made from 100% Dornfelder grapes, which is pale pink in colour, refreshingly balanced with flavours of fresh berries and cream and light bodied at 11% alcohol."
Product Features: Sustainable
Winemaker: Simon Woodhead
The main challenges in the vineyard are deer, which roam the parkland and, unsurprisingly, the weather. This is helped by the south-facing vineyards, which maximise sun exposure and ripening, and the proximity of the Stopham farm animals, which provide copious amounts of organic fertiliser to boost the sandy soils. Simon practises sustainable farming.
The grapes were pressed directly on entering the winery, there was no skin contact. They were slowly fermented in stainless steel under strict temperature control for two months. As expected from highly aromatic varieties, there was no malolactic fermentation. Storage was on fine lees until early summer, with bottling in April 2014. The wine is smartly packaged in Burgundy-shaped bottles and closed with Stelvin Luxe Plus to preserve the impeccable purity of fruit.
Stopham Estate's 2014 Pinot Blanc is a lovely pale lemon colour in the glass with fresh perfumes of pear. On the palate, pink grapefruit, melon and sweet fennel combine with a zippy acidity. Well balanced, the wine has a succulent sweetness which lasts well into the lengthy finish.
Food Suggestion: Great with delicately flavoured steamed fish with pan-Asian spices and light, fragrant rice.
Closure: Stelvin Lux ABV:11% Acidity [g/l]: 7