You simply must get to Ridgeview, taste their world-class sparklers and see the vineyard and winery up-close (when we are allowed out again!)
The vineyards on site represent 10% of the total land that Ridgeview receives fruit from. Parcels in Hampshire, Kent, Surrey and East Anglia grow grapes that are destined for Ridgeview wines. These parcels are fermented separately so that the winemaker has a broad palate to work with. Stylistically, most of Ridgeview’s wines go through fermentation in stainless steel tanks, and almost everything goes through malolactic fermentation to soften the texture and flavours.
Ridgeview’s core range is made up of six different styles of wine, each with their own individual identity.
This was the first wine Ridgeview ever made, back in 1996 with their first vintage. It has been produced as a Non Vintage wine since 2017. The blend of Bloomsbury was originally inspired by the plantings on site – 60% Chardonnay, 40% Noir and Meunier. This is Ridgeview’s best selling wine, and you should be able to pick it up in your local Waitrose! This is a lively, in-your-face wine and we are told that there are some magnums in the pipeline! Perfect for a big celebration!
The Cavendish NV is the one you may have seen on the wine list at that fancy restaurant. The Savoy, for example, serve this wine (for £120!). The blend for Cavendish is the direct opposite of Bloomsbury – two thirds Pinot Noir and Meunier, one third Chardonnay. This is an excellent food wine, as it carries extra roundness and body. Super creamy, but with sky high acidity, this is a touch rounder than Bloomsbury, but the high acidity balances the wine perfectly.
Ridgeview’s final Non Vintage wine is a sparkling rose. This wine is Chardonnay dominant (50%), super clean, super fresh and fruit-forward. This makes for an absolutely gorgeous summer sparkler. This is a blended rose, not saignee method – This means that red and white wines were blended together to create the rose – The saignee method is when you leave the skins of the grapes on for an amount of time during the winemaking process.
Now, for the top tier wines:
Also served in The Savoy (£210!), Ridgeview’s single vineyard Blanc de Blancs is produced from the 25 year old Chardonnay vines on site here in Sussex. The vineyard here is clay soil, and the vines produce some of the most opulent fruit. The Blanc de Blancs has a real tropical quality in the background along with some salinity, and a nutty creaminess. This is another wine that Ridgeview produces magnums from – Don’t you think that a magnum of this Blanc de Blancs on Christmas Day is the dream?
Ridgeview’s Blanc de Noirs is 68% Pinot Noir and 32% Pinot Meunier. This is Ridgeview’s richest, boldest style of wine and another one that you will catch on the wine lists of fancy restaurants – this is SUCH a foodie wine! The focus of the winemaker when it comes to this top tier range is purity and precision, and this focus really shows in these wines.
Rose de Noirs
Ridgeview’s Rose de Noirs is produced using the saignee method – they leave the skins of the grapes in the press for approximately six hours. This gives the wine a super pale, super pretty appearance. This wine is gorgeously rich and again, fantastic with food. You will find it particularly delicious when served alongside earthy dishes or rhubarb/wild strawberries.
Oak Reserve NV
This is a limited edition wine, produced to celebrate Ridgeview’s 25 year anniversary! This is a stunning wine, and a powerful beast. The oak really sings – it is rich and decadent, and if you love that style of sparkler, you will ADORE this wine. The Oak Reserve is low dosage in comparison to Ridgeview’s other wines – they are usually 8-10g per litre, and this is just 3g.
All things being well, Ridgeview will be opening a new restaurant on site in June next year. You must also look out for Ridgefest in July/August – this is a seriously good day out!
But for now, let’s stay home, and enjoy great wine!