UK vineyard wins international
competition – with our help
From August 2010 newsletter
Camel Valley Vineyard, a client of our Corkwise wine technical support service, has won an International Wine Challenge Trophy, beating over 450 competitor products, including many Champagne 'giants'. Its victory, in the sparkling rosé wine category, is the first ever by an English wine. Geoff Taylor of Corkwise explains our association with the company.
"Camel Valley has been a Corkwise customer for at least 15 years. The wine analysis, advice, and consultancy goes back many years. Each year the wines are assessed and recommendations are taken on board for the next vintage. Some of this could involve getting better grape quality (Camel Valley is meticulous about the quality of grapes used in its wines) when to pick and what yeast to use, fermentation conditions, what can be done to optimise flavour aroma profile, ageing and the balance between sugar and acid at bottling.
> Quality at point of sale
The rationale behind all of this is optimisation of quality at point of sale. The advice we have given for this winning wine is an accumulation of knowledge over several years and in several stages. First, the base wine is produced; this needs to have certain flavour, colour and analytical profiles on which to build other flavours. The second stage is the secondary fermentation in bottle to produce the pressure (bubbles), then ageing on the lees (yeast cells) for a minimum of 9 months. This produces what are termed yeast autolysis characteristics. Logically the longer it is left, the more this character is obvious, but too much is not desirable, so timing is crucial. The final stages are riddling, disgorging, adding the dosage (a sugar solution) to ensure that the flavour balance is harmonious, and corking. A further period of resting is advised to ensure that the flavours are integrated.
All of these stages have an impact in terms of quality, and timing is crucial. Camel Valley has been very successful over the last few years, and we have been able to help them achieve their aims and objectives in producing high quality English wines."
Nutfield site: Geoff Taylor
Camel Valley: www.camelvalley.com