Reichsrat Von Buhl Sekt Reserve, Pfalz, Germany

80% Weissburgunder, 20% Chardonnay. Age not known. 80% Stainless Steel, 20% Oak. 

Notes as written blind from The Big Blind Bargain Bubble Tasting.

This is impressive. Nice ripe pear, almond and yellow grapefruit. There’s some smokiness, and also some attractive creamy sourdough. Some delicacy on the palate, although it is a bit jumpy. Something savoury – oak – here? Good stuff, really well assembled. 16.5

/ Germany, Other, Reichsrat Von Buhl

Griesel Riesling Brut 2015

100% Riesling. Vinification in large oak.

Notes as written blind from The Big Blind Bargain Bubble Tasting.

A bit different! Bright florals, cooked lime and a sort of poached quality to the fruit. Oxidative. interesting style, maybe a touch developed? 15

/ Germany, Griesel, Other

Langlois-Chateau Crémant de Loire Brut NV, France

60% Chenin Blanc, 20% Chardonnay, 20% Cabernet Franc. All steel, 24 months on lees minimum.

Notes as written blind from The Big Blind Bargain Bubble Tasting.

Pretty white florals with sweet pear. A slightly wooly, damp note – is this the Chenin? It does expand out on the palate nicely. The dosage is quite high in the mix. Simple but solid. 15.5

Breaky Bottom Seyval Blanc Cuvée Peter Christiansen 2014

A good vintage for this wine. This carries some of that Seyval signature – a little rustic cowslip with sage and hard, yellow grapefruit – alongside a really attractive tangy lemon tart and even some riper, sweeter yellow fruits. Even with the nice fresh dough touches it is so un-Champagne-like! An unloved grape gets the red carpet treatment, with a nice sensation of fruit sweetness alongside and a rather fine mousse.

15.5

Date Tasted : 01/11/2019

/ 2014, Breaky Bottom, England, Other

Breaky Bottom Cuvée Cornelis Hendrickson 2013

Cuvée Cornelis Hendrickson 2013 46% Chardonnay, 40% Seyval Blanc, 7% Pinot Noir, 7% Pinot Meunier. This is a pretty wine on the nose, with white pear and wild meadow and herb aromas sitting nicely with a richer sense of ratafia biscuit, creamy sourdough and honeyed nuts. Possibly a touch green, but the Pinots seem more present than they really are with some nice red fruit notes. With time a vein of oxidative, bruised autumnal apples and quince comes through, which runs through the strikingly tight palate.

14.5

Date Tasted : 02/11/2019

/ 2013, Breaky Bottom, England, Other

Camel Valley Cornwall Brut 2015

50% Seyval Blanc, 35% Chardonnay, 15% Pinot Noir. This is really well made, showing how Seyval Blanc can mingle with the Champagne grapes effectively. Gentle yellow citrus and floral, herbal touches. The palate is lithe but complete, just showing a touch more creamy weight than the younger wines. My favourite of the Camel Valley Blancs, not concerned with furrowed-brow seriousness but guaranteed to please.

16

Date Tasted : 13/09/2019

/ 2015, Camel Valley, England, Other

Camel Valley Annie’s Anniversary 2016

Annie’s Anniversary 2016 is made from 100% Seyval Blanc from the vineyards at the estate, so called as Annie Lindo has been pruning these vines since they were planted! It’s less herbal than some Seyval, with attractive pear fruit and a gentle flinty smokiness. A touch vegetal (in a nice way) with a friendly, playful dosage.

15.5

Date Tasted : 13/09/2019

/ 2016, Camel Valley, England, Other

Lyme Bay Winery Brut Reserve NV

I had to select this as it’s one of those rare, unique and very non-Champagne blends that just works! Pinot Blanc, Seyval Blanc, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier, Chardonnay and Reichensteiner – a miniature stroke of genius this one, with the Reichensteiner offering up a little grapey, floral muscat deliciousness to sit alongside the more classical yellow apple, citrus and a nice, controlled herbal character. Youthful on the palate, and fun without being flippant – yes there is sweetness but it is balanced and moreish. Great value and something a little different.

16

Date Tasted : 13/09/2019

/ England, Lyme Bay Winery, NV, Other

Fox & Fox Inspiration Blanc de Gris 2013

Predominantly (I believe over 90%) Pinot Gris. Such aromatic interest here, with a tropical fruit salad (think kiwi, papaya, starfruit), zesty candied lemon and ginger, honeysuckle and just a little rose. It’s not at all blowsy though – rather a very focussed, precise kind of exoticism. It’s all about the impeccable, expressive fruit on the palate, with a lovely balance between the exuberance of the nose and a crunchy, very English zip (helped along by the small Chardonnay addition). Particularly fine, persistent mousse. Really love this, and it’s drinking perfectly now.

16.5

Date Tasted : 09/09/2018

/ 2013, England, Fox & Fox, Other

Fox & Fox Inspiration Blanc de Gris 2014

100% Pinot Gris. A more recent disgorgement than the other 2014s. One of England’s most unique sparkling wines, with fragrant pink grapefruit and rose, peppery powdered ginger and a fantastic zingy green mandarin touched with tropical starfruit. Still primary and beautifully fresh with that clean candied citrus palate magnified with perfectly judged autolytic development, textured yet staying clear of anything that might obscure the subtle fragrance. One to drink fairly young.

16.5

Date Tasted : 13/11/2019

/ 2014, England, Fox & Fox, Other