Tasted - Fox & Fox 'Inspiration' Blanc De Blancs (Pinot Gris/Chardonnay) 2013


Pinot Gris is such a chameleon. Conventional wisdom would place it as too aromatic for fine sparkling wine, and I certainly can't think of any other examples where it is the dominant grape variety (although it is a permitted variety in Champagne). Most of the plantings here in the UK have been for still wine, or perhaps with small percentages added to sparkling blends for a bit of interest. Length of season and crop load seem to be quite important for Pinot Gris, and here we seem quite well-placed to coax out some of the more exuberant flavours of the variety whilst maintaining the freshness which warmer climates lose with longer time on the vine. This is an engrossing, unique wine; perhaps others in England will follow?

Fox & Fox Inspiration Blanc De Blancs 2013

Predominantly (I believe over 90%) Pinot Gris. Such aromatic interest here, with a tropical fruit salad (think kiwi, papaya, starfruit), zesty candied lemon and ginger, honeysuckle and just a little rose. It's not at all blowsy though - rather a very focussed, precise kind of exoticism. It's all about the impeccable, expressive fruit on the palate, with a lovely balance between the exuberance of the nose and a crunchy, very English zip (helped along by the small Chardonnay addition). Particularly fine, persistent mousse. Really love this, and it's drinking perfectly now. 91/100

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