|Science, sparkling wine and cake – is there a better afternoon?
The process is relatively simple – just one of trial and error. Taste the wine, check for balance and trial different percentages of dosage. However, the difficult part comes with getting accurate measurements using tiny increments. We were looking in the 1.25 – 2% region, so you can see that it is a surprisingly exact science where a small change really does make a big difference to the character of the wine. We ended up compromising at the lower end, 1.4%, where we all agreed the fruit flavours had a good chance to show their complexity, without it being sickly sweet.
|Weigh that wine!
Of course, once the wine is finally bottled with the dosage, it will still continue to develop in flavour over time, so knowing the correct amount to add is also dependent on experience in understanding how the acidity of the wine will soften in the bottle. Of course, this is experience that I don’t yet have. I have observed the rounding off of Rothley Wine’s Spirit of Freedom – the existing rose sparkling – over the last year though, so I felt I could give it at least a little bit of an educated guess. Time will tell!
|Compare and contrast
The wine will be called ‘Noble Purpose’ and already has great flavour and beautiful colour, even though it is still young and by no means finished. The wine is being made for Rothley Wines at Halfpenny Green Vineyard. They make a lot of the sparkling wine in the region because it is just too time consuming and costly for the smaller, family operated vineyards to do for themselves. Halfpenny Green very generously threw some samples my way on the day too – you can read all about their Rondo here and there are more posts to come on their wines.
Another great learning experience for me and the anticipation of another great English sparkling wine to come.