Nyetimber put English Sparkling Wine on the international map. They were the first English Vineyard to see the enormous potential to make Champagne style wines, using “Champagne grapes”, in England. It took a couple of Americans, the Mosses, to go for it in the 1990s, and the industry has never looked back.
This article isn’t going to be a history lesson. However, there’s plenty of places you can read more detail on how Stuart and Sandy Moss created Nyetimber and how it has progressed under the ownership of Andy Hill (briefly) and Eric Heerema. The focus here is on the wines from this top English vineyard that are available to buy today. It’s a fantastic range, full of exceptional English Sparkling Wines. So, let’s start with the flagship wine, Nyetimber’s Classic Cuvée MV.
This really is a classy Classic Cuvée! The holy trinity of Champagne grapes (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier) have been combined, after many hours of tasting base wines and trying different blends, into a wonderful English Sparkling wine. At first, it displays toasty, spicy and complex aromas showing wonderful development after extended ageing in Nyetimber’s cellar (usually more than three years). Then, the palate supports these complex aromas with honey, almond, pastry and baked apple flavours. In conclusion, a very fine and elegant English Sparkling Wine with a great combination of intensity, delicacy and length.
The wine in called “MV”, which stands for multi-vintage, as it is a blend of wines from different years. The intention is to balance out vintage variation and create a consistent Nyetimber style. So, Nyetimber spent years building up reserves of wine to be able to do this, and originally released vintage wines. However, we do have a couple of Nyetimber wines from the last two years of vintage releases. Firstly, the magical 2009, which is showing beautiful ageing notes of hay, honey and mushroom. Secondly, the luxurious 2010 magnum which is so fresh and will last for another decade.
Like something a bit sweeter? The Classic Cuvéé is “Brut” in style, which is dry, the same as most Champagnes and English Sparkling Wines that you’ll find. Nyetimber make a”Demi-Sec”, which is sweeter without bring too sweet!
The Cuvée Chérie has light golden hues and a slight silver undertone illuminating this delicately effervescent wine. Aromas of pure lemon, mineral and honey tones and a hint of tangerine fill the nose. Afterward, as you taste, the palate has a lively, sweet lemon start offset by crisp acidity and a very clean, pure structure. Elegant, delicate and fresh, it works particularly well with richer foods.
If you fancy soem pink fizz, then Nyetimber’s Rosé MV is a luxurious option.
Nyetimber’s rosé is a beautiful, sunset pink colour. Aromas include a charming mix of fresh red fruits along with intriguing spice notes of anise and lavender. The palate has a creamy, round texture with refreshing redcurrant, raspberry and cherry flavours. Suggestions of brioche lead into an elegant, silky finish.
Blanc de Blancs
If you like your English Sparkling Wine to be crisp and linear, without being thin and harsh, Nyetimber’s Blanc de Blancs, made purely from Chardonnay, might be your perfect tipple.
This Blanc de Blancs shows Nyetimber’s classic signature of delicate floral and citrus aromas followed by subtle vanilla and brioche flavours, and with a pure crystalline core thanks to the inclusion of Chardonnay from their Hampshire vineyards.
We finish with a look at Nyetimber’s two ultra-premium cuvées. These are the Tillington Single Vineyard 2013 and 1086 Prestige Cuvée 2010.
With the Tillington, fine bubbles rise to the top of this pale gold wine. Aromas of wild strawberries and raspberries emerge along with crème brûlée and meringue. Flavours of mandarin, toasted almonds and pastry lead into vanilla. This premium English Sparkling Wine balances elegance and richness in perfect harmony, with refreshing acidity and a textured, decadent finish.
The 1086 Prestige Cuvée 2010 from Nyetimber is the pinnacle of English Sparkling Wine. With only the best grapes selected from their extensive sites, and eight full years on lees, the ingredients and techniques provide the foundation for an exceptional wine. The aromas are refined and complex, with almond croissant and toasted nut leaping out up-front, followed by ripe English orchard fruit and citrus peel aromas.
To taste, the 1086 presents a vibrant, tangy citrus and orchard fruit fusion upfront that softens to riper stone fruit flavours with white peach to the fore. The mid-taste offers a creamy, nougat richness, which envelops and complements the radiant fruit flavours. There’s a real sense of journey and structure to the wine and it ends on a lingering aftertaste of crushed, toasted nuts and light mineral hues. It’s a truly sublime wine. The energetic tension that the 2010 vintage brings ensures this wine has a very long life ahead, and the balance between richness and fruit purity is an absolute triumph.
As you can see, Nyetimber has an English Sparkling Wine for every occasion, each one of exceptional quality.