Litmus releases £35 English Pinot Noir

UK-based international wine business consultancy Litmus Wines has released its first Red Pinot Noir since 2011 – with an RRP of £30-£35.

Litmus Wines’ Mike Florence, John Worontschak and Matthieu Elzinga

Made from 100% Surrey Pinot Noir, the 2014 Litmus Red Pinot, made becomes the fourth wine in the Litmus range, along with Element 20 (a Chardonnay, Pinot Gris and Bacchus white blend), White Pinot and Orange (a Bacchus).

Litmus winemaker John Worontschak described the new release as “benchmark Pinot Noir that belies just how good English red wines can be”.

The RRP for the wine is in the £30-£35 range.

“We make Red Pinot only when the fruit is of the highest quality and fully ripened,” the winemaker added.

“In England that means that it must be an exceptional autumn, as in 2011, 2014 and 2016. Selected hand-picked Pinot Noir bunches were lightly crushed, cold soaked and punched down for fermentation on skins then pressed for malolactic fermentation into new and older French oak barriques. This was followed by a further 17 months of élevage in oak and six months on cork prior to release.

2014 Litmus Red Pinot

“The wine displays an exceptional complexity of flavours and the hallmark silkiness found in quality Pinot Noir, and will continue to gain further elegance and complexity with age.”

While the recommended pricing of the 2014 Litmus Red Pinot may be perceived by some as high for an English still wine, according to Litmus, demand is strong and Litmus stockist Marks & Spencer had already committed to a quarter of the production before it was officially released.

Nick Connell, Litmus sales manager added: “I’ve been eager to get the Red Pinot out in the marketplace for some time now, especially given the large amount of enquiries I’ve received to date. Suffice to say I will have no problem allocating this amazing wine. Just a shame there isn’t more of it.”

Litmus Wines was founded by winemaker and international wine consultant John Worontschak in 2008. Based at Denbies Wine Estate in Dorking, Surrey, the company is involved with wine projects around the world, including Richard Branson’s Mont Rochelle estate in South Africa.

The company also imports and distributes wines, including Stepp winery in Pfalz, as well as promoting its own drinks brands, including Litmus Wines and Ginking, a product launched last year that combines gin and English sparkling wine.

The Litmus team consists of director John Worontschak, production manager Matthieu Elzinga, sales manager Nick Connell and general manager Michael Florence.

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