England take on Portugal tomorrow and I’m keeping up my patriotic duty with another English wine. This time it’s Biddenden’s Gribble Bridge Rose 2004. It’s made in a tiny town in Kent in what is claimed to be England’s oldest privately owned commercial vineyard. That’s about a great a claim as being England’s oldest un-injured striker, but it works for them.
Of their 22 acres only one row of vines is Pinot Noir, so I was quite surprised that they had a Rose, but this is a blend of Ortega and Pinot Noir.
The wine is a bright, clear and positively exhuberant pink. It’s really visually attractive. It smells clean and fresh with lemon and the tiniest drop of strawberry, although the colour amplifies it.
It’s dry with a refreshingly crisp acidity. The wine feels light and fresh and benefits from being served cool, but not ice cold. It’s lemony and the strawberry doesn’t carry through.
Gribble Bridge Rose is fresh and refreshing, and a good example of Kentish wine. It is over priced at around £6.50 a bottle, you can certainly get better Rose’s from the New World for a fiver, but if you want to try an English wine, this is a good one to try. If you find yourself in the neighbourhood stop in for a bottle, or try Budgens who distribute on a limited basis.