Howzat! Our Cricket World Cup has runneth over: WINE REVIEW

I sit here on Monday morning emotionally exhausted, preparing to write this week’s wine column after one of the most amazing cricket matches that has ever been played.

Monday, 15th July 2019, 4:10 pm
Updated Thursday, 18th July 2019, 4:34 pm
Hambledon Classic Cuvee NV Hampshire

Yes, finally England have won the Cricket Word Cup but my oh my didn’t they put us through it before they eventually raised the cup.

When they were younger all three of my sons played cricket at Hambledon, and I seemed to spend entire summers wandering round a boundary edge, so cricket has played a huge part in my family and the World Cup has caused much excitement in this house.

How do we celebrate that famous victory? 

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Stanley Sauvignon Blanc Picture: Jim Tannock 2010

‘Champagne Super Over’ was a clever headline but this is an England victory so the perfect celebration wine has to be a glass of English fizz.

Hambledon is often thought of as the birthplace of modern cricket, and in many ways is also the birthplace of the modern English wine industry. 

So it has to be a glass of Hambledon Classic Cuvée Brut NV, Hampshire (hambledonvineyard.co.uk £28.50, Hermitage Cellars £24.95 on offer) – the perfect sparkling wine to toast that famous victory. 

The bottle even includes an image of an old style wicket and crickets bats.

It is a classic blend of chardonnay, pinot noir and pinot meunier and has been aged for 30 months in the cellars before release and is without doubt one of the wines that really helped establish the English Sparkling industry as something to be taken seriously – a bit like our cricket team now.

The bouquet offers the classic English fizz aromas of green apples and spring hedge rows with some nice nutty characters.

The palate is very fresh with almost piercing green apple acidity, some real complexity and a nicely textured, long finish. One of my sons is getting married soon and we will be opening the batting at the reception with this lovely wine.

As for New Zealand, didn’t they take defeat magnificently?

It is no consolation to come second but maybe they can drown their sorrows in one of their top class sauvignon blancs?

Stanley Estate was established in 2003 by Steve Pellett and Bridget Ennals, who met while studying horticulture at the University of Bath. 

After travelling through Africa they eventually settled in Marlborough and planted some vines and in a comparatively short time have become one of the region’s finest producers.

Stanley Estate Sauvignon Blanc 2017, Marlborough (Hermitage Cellars £13.25) is a single vineyard wine from the Awatere Valley, which is a high quality sub region of Marlborough.

The nose shows the classic Marlborough characteristics of ripe fruits including grapefruit, passion fruit and gooseberries along with a little tomato leaf and green pepper, followed by a fresh, zesty palate with more tropical fruits.

It’s the perfect wine to sip and contemplate one of the most amazing sporting afternoons of this or any other summer.