Hambledon Classic Cuvee NV

Hambledon Classic Cuvee NV

Established in 1952 by Major General Sir Guy Salisbury-Jones, Hambledon in the South Downs is England’s oldest commercial vineyard.

In a nutshell: Ian Kellett acquired Hambledon Vineyard in 1999. As a passionate wine lover, Ian was intrigued by the winemaking heritage of the property. After analysing the commercial potential for English wine, he began studying oenology at Plumpton College in Sussex with a view to restoring Hambledon to its former glory.

Research from 2001-2003 convinced him that sparkling wines were the future and in 2005 Ian planted a 10-acre ‘test bed’ of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier to see which of the 27 different combinations of vine clones and rootstocks gave the best results. In 2010 one of the other final pieces of the jigsaw slotted into place with the appointment of Herve Jestin, formerly one of Champagne’s leading chefs de cave.

All of Hambledon Vineyard’s fruit is 100% estate grown on its 200 acres of vineyards. Grapes are harvested by hand and vinified in the only gravity-fed, state-of-the-art winery in the UK. In 2018 Hambledon cut down into their chalk soils to build an underground wine cellar to store up to 2 million bottles of wine maturing sur lattes and at the perfect temperature and humidity for aging. A new tasting room, restaurant and visitor centre is also planned in 2021 and the winery has recently invested in a new biomass generator that will convert vine prunings into energy that will power the entire Estate. Today, the House produces three main cuvées, all of which are currently Chardonnay-led, non-vintage blends.

Vineyards

The chalk on which the vines grow was formed on the seabed of the Paris basin some 65 million years ago. The same chalk, with the same Belemnite content, is found in the best Chardonnay areas of the Cotes des Blancs in Champagne and is thought to be a key factor in the quality of the wines.

Vinification

58% Chardonnay 18% Pinot Noir 23% Pinot Meunier

For their Classic Cuvée, all the grapes were pre-selected and handpicked from their private estate, 88% from the 2017 harvest. They left the wines resting for six months on fine lees before blending them with reserve wines before bottling

Tasting Notes

Fresh sourdough, magnolia and lily scents mingle with a hint of smoke over a core of greengage, red plums and dessert apples. The Palate is vivid, almost vibrantly crunchy with precise, structured yet ripe acidity. It is linear, dense and long with momentum and power that bodes well for the future. This wine has energy and latent tension that will unfold to reveal layers of floral and stone fruit aromas and a rich palate with great length.

Vintages: Important Note

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Vintages may vary. If you require a specific vintage please contact us in advance to check.

Reviews

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Please note: Vintages may vary. If you require a specific vintage please contact us in advance to check.

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