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Asda launches own-label English sparkling wine

Hoping to capitalise on the growing thirst for homegrown fizz, UK supermarket Asda has released an own-label English sparkling wine from Denbies in Surrey.

Part of the supermarket’s Extra Special range, the fizz is made from traditional Champagne grapes Pinot Noir, Meunier and Chardonnay and costs £25 a bottle.

Made with grapes from the 2015 vintage, Asda’s ‘Extra Special English Sparkling’ is said to boast notes of “baked apple, citrus and complex toasty aromas”, making it a great pairing for seafood and chicken.

“English sparkling has seen such incredible growth over the last year, with our customers now looking to trade-up from Prosecco to something a little more premium for special occasions,” said Asda wine buyer, Sean Aitken.

“To ensure we’re providing customers with quality sparkling, we’ve worked closely with the team at Denbies to bottle a crisp, delicious English fizz plucked straight from vines on London’s doorstep,” he added.

Denbies Winemaker John Worontschak is heartened to see the industry he’s been a part of for 30 years finally getting the recognition it deserves.

“Having been a part of the English wine industry for 30 years, it’s extraordinary to see it blossoming so quickly, with many of the world’s finest sparkling wines now straight from English vineyards,” he said.

“The Extra Special Sparkling we’ve produced for Asda is an excellent example of a high-quality sparkling wine showing all the finesse and complexity that can be obtained with careful winemaking and a temperate climate,” he added.

As summer draws to a close hopes are high for the 2018 vintage in England after Brits were treated to their hottest summer on record.

English winemakers are anticipating a bumper crop of high quality grapes, with some going as far as to predict that 2018 will be England’s best vintage to date.

English sparkling wine specialist Stephen Skelton told db in July that the 2018 growing season was the best he’s known and that he’s anticipating an “exceptionally good” vintage both in terms of volume and quality.

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