Wine of the Week: Hush Heath Estate Balfour Brut Rosé
We at team db want to celebrate the very best bottles from our Global Masters. Every Wednesday, we’ll select a wine that picked up either a Gold or Master from our competition series, and tell you why the judges loved it.
English Wine Week kicks off on Saturday 25 May, and we’re itching to crack out our stash of homegrown fizz. If I had the money to burn, I’d start the weekend with this lovely pink sparkler from Kent’s onomatopoeic winery, Hush Heath.
Grapes for this single vineyard wine were hand-picked in the 2013 harvest, before winemakers Owen Elias and Victoria Ash worked their magic. This year English Wine Week falls on the May bank holiday, so Londoners can sample the estate’s wines themselves by schlepping to the state-of-the-art tasting rooms owner Richard Balfour-Lynn spent £4 million opening last summer.
Fermented in steel vats at 16%, this traditional method fizz spent 31 months ageing on its lees, which clearly made the difference with our judging panel, as it picked up a Gold in our 2017 Global Sparkling Masters.
The judges loved the rosé’s complexity, and despite a very delicate colour which one called “only just a rosé”, more than a few praised its “lovely” fruitiness. That secondary fermentation didn’t go unnoticed, as several judges including Lynne Sherriff MW enjoyed those baked bread and “toasted brioche” aromas.
Patricia Stefanowicz MW, who also joined our 2017 Masters judging panel, said she found the wine mature on the palate, with “crisp acidity,” while a number of MWs also picked up on its length. With hundreds of entries into our 2017 competition from Italy to the USA, it’s clear that Hush Heath’s rosé can hold its own on the international stage. Cheers!
The wine: Hush Heath Estate Balfour Brut Rosé
The source: Kent, UK
The grape(s): Chardonnay (37%), Pinot Noir (33%), Pinot Meunier (20%)
The style: A traditional method rosé sparkling wine
The price: £30-50
The medal: Gold – The Global Sparkling Masters, 2017