In the spirit of our founder’s passion for excellence and innovation, the winemaking team at Gusbourne love putting their skills and experience into seeking out the new. Our latest special releases are emblematic of that spirit of adventure.
“When we do our blind tastings,” says Head Winemaker Charlie Holland, “we occasionally come across a young base wine that makes us think, ‘Wow, that’s really interesting. Different. Unique.’” In January 2016, when the team were blind-tasting the 2015 wines, there were a couple of barrels that did just that. “They really stood out as something special. Something we could – and should – try something new with,” Charlie recalls.
That something new was fermenting and ageing these sparkling wine in just French oak barrels. Oak ageing imparts a roundness, weightiness and creaminess, alongside hints of vanilla, toast and subtle spice, to wines. At Gusbourne, we use a selection of wines aged in oak barrels as part of our expertly blended vintage sparkling wines. But until now, had we never made a single-barrel, oak-aged sparkling wine.
The result is a very limited release of two exceptional single-barrel sparkling wines: Blanc de Blancs 2015 and Blanc de Noirs 2015. Just a barrel of each. Fermented in French oak barrels and on their lees for a minimum of 64 months before disgorgement. True artisanal creations, highly crafted, that showcase two unique stories of one exceptional vintage year.
Oak Barrel Aged Blanc de Blancs 2015
This wine was fermented and aged in Oak Barrel Seven, an old 228l barrique from a Bordeaux cooperage. Bright gold in colour, with a fine, persistent mousse, it has aromas of white stone fruit, ripe pear and toasted hazelnuts that all carry through to the palate. Barrel ageing brings hints of spice, a buttery toastiness and a long, rounded finish.
Oak Barrel Aged Blanc de Noirs 2015
Fermentated in Oak Barrel One, an old oak barrique, this wine is golden in colour with a fine, persistent mousse. It has aromas of red apple, white nectarine and candied peel. Silky in texture, it bursts with notes of raspberry, red cherry and white peach. Floral hints combine with spice, toasted nuts, liquorice and pastry in its long, complex finish.
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