Part 2 of our visit to Hambledon Vineyard in Hampshire, southern England. Here, Ian from Hambledon discusses the English "terroir"  and how it effects grape variety planting.  We then travel with Aussie winemaker, Brendan Barratt to London's Chinatown to try out some unusual but very fitting food pairings!

Here are some of the "wine vocabulary" of terms that you will encounter in this film clip:

Acidity - a natural component of the wine giving zesty characteristics and making the a "mouthwatery" feel. Having good acidity is vital if a wine is to be balanced and have aging potential. In sparkling wine, acidity is a major component that people talk about. It can sometimes be countered by adding higher levels of sugar or, become a major feature of the wine by adding less sugar.

Body - How does the wine feel in your mouth? A bit like the difference between skimmed milk and full fat milk; the latter has more body. In wine the body is largely determined by the alcohol level. The higher it is then the more full-bodied it is likely to be.

Complexity - Complex wines are how we describe great wines with nuance and layers of character, giving contemplative pleasure.

Depth - Intensity and concentration of the wine. If there are layers of complex and intense flavours, we might describe it as having depth.

Lees - These are the dead yeast cells that are left usually floating to the bottom of a tank after fermentation. Leaving a wine "sur lie", literally on the lees, will add another layer of character and complexity.

Structure - This refers to how the components in the wine (such as acidity, tannin, alcohol, etc.) are working together. Good structure is what we look for when determining if a wine will improve in the cellar over time.

Terroir - "Terroir" is a French word with no exact translation into English, however, we use it to describe all the factors that may influence the conditions for growing the fruit in the vineyard. This includes, the soil and subsoils, geology, the climate (temperature & precipitation, etc.) and can also include the winemaker and what techniques they employ to nurture their grapes.

 

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The cathedral in Santiago de Compostela, the final resting place of Saint James, rises out of the landscape, infested with antiquity. The rambling steep streets give way to shafts of dramatic light, emblazoned chapels, and tightly packed tapas bars, dusty, as old novels pressed together in antiquarian bookshops.

 

Driving into the Entre-Deux-Mers region from the north, the vineyards roll out like a bright green deep-pile carpet across the undulating land. It’s hard not to be excited about tasting wines with so much heritage, as we head to Chateau-Sainte-Marie to meet with 5th generation owner, Stéphane Dupuch. 

 

It’s been a hot couple of weeks here trekking around northern Catalonia. From the homeland and backdrop to surrealist Salvador Dali’s world to dramatic remnants of the volcano park an hour away, this place is a land of rough-hewn vistas and rustic hospitality.

 

It’s a scorching summer evening in Regent’s Park and what is my glass is of premium importance. The fact that Britain is experiencing a thorough multi-day licking from the sun, is itself unconventional, as are the pourers at this evenings tasting: 4 wine producers from the appellation AOC Ventoux in the southern Rhone.

 

Carluccio's deli and restaurants are a high-street staple, where great flavours in food blend easily with quality wines on the list. Following the death of the charismatic founder, Antonio Carluccio, his spirit lives on in style and philosophy. Nick Breeze talks to Head of International Operations (especially where wine is concerned!), Mike Stocks about wine-list tips, food matching and the great man of "mof mof":

 

Winemaker and owner Nicola D’Auria greeted us at the entrance of this fascinating cantina. The winery and cellars have been designed by Rocco valentini in the shape of a vertical barrel in order to immerse the tasters senses in wine.

 

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