2008 Gusbourne Estate Brut Reserve, Kent, England
Winner of the International Wine and Spirits Competition Trophy for Best Sparkling Wine of 2013. Judging Panel Tasting Note: "Pale gold colour with streams of tiny bubbles, the aromas are hazelnut, toast and underlying delicate redcurrant fruit and a hint of rose petal. The palate is mid-weight, concentrated, rich and exotic with layers of flavour, creamy mousse and fresh acidity. Exquisite." Gusbourne Estate is located in Kent, on the escarpment of Appledore and dates back to 1410. The vineyards are situated on all-south-facing slopes, with a warm, dry mesoclimate, and clay, sandy loam soils. The folks at Gusbourne are leading the charge in establishing England as a producer of international sparkling wine. Their estate vineyards are planted exclusively to Champagne grapes--Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier--and their production is dedicated to sparkling wine. They follow the traditional method of sparkling winemaking, with additional aging on the the lees. The Estate Brut Reserve saw 39 months aging on the lees, each vintage is crafted to showcase the 'house' style as well as the style of classic English sparkling wines. Enticing peachy citrus fruit aromas are enveloped on the palate by toasty brioche, toffee, apple and cinnamon spice flavors, with hints of creme brulee on the finish. If you've never tried English sparkling wines, now is the time! Its creamy mousse and depth of flavor give all competition in this price point a serious run for the money.