Essex vineyard owners ‘absolutely thrilled’ after scooping industry accolade
- Credit: Toppesfield Vineyard
Essex vineyard owners say they are “absolutely thrilled” after scooping a gold award at a national competition for their Bacchus Reserve 2016.
Jane and Peter Moore of Toppesfield Vineyard at Halstead took the accolade at the 12th Sommelier Wine Awards (SWA), a British event aimed at on-trade wines for producers selling into UK hotels, restaurants, pubs and bars.
Jane Moore said: “We are absolutely thrilled to have won this gold award, particularly for our second year of commercial
production. This wine has already won a number of awards, with the SWA providing further recognition and kudos.
“At Toppesfield, we are absolutely committed to producing excellent quality wines.
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“From the outset, we were determined to provide our vines with the best possible growing conditions.
“Winning awards such as this one provides real endorsement of the hard work invested to date in Toppesfield Vineyard.”
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Judges praised the wine produced by the Moores, who started their vineyard in 2012 after buying some farmland next to their house and looking into the area’s history.
The area had been planted with vines in Roman times which inspired them to create a 21st century vineyard on the rolling hills around Toppesfield.
Michael Fiducia, head sommelier at Coworth Park, Ascot, said the Toppesfield wine was defined by its elegance, and described ‘elderflower notes with light nuances of gooseberry and greengage’.
Cheese at Leadenhall’s Robert Mason described it as ‘savoury on the nose, with some ripe lychee, peach and jasmine aromas, leading to a weighty body, with ripe fruit and fresh acidity’, adding that it would be an
‘ideal match for risotto’.
Competition director Chris Losh said: “The progress of English sparkling wines has been well documented, but the still whites have come on in leaps and bounds of late, with Bacchus leading the way.
“With its lovely aromatic ‘hedgerow’ characters, it’s like the flavours of an English summer in a glass.”
The Moores chose Bacchus as their main white grape variety as it is a ‘cool climate’ grape which has been very successful in East Anglia’s dry and sunny climate.