Tasted - Hoffmann & Rathbone Classic Cuvée 2013, Sussex



This is the current release from husband and wife team Ulrich Hoffman and Birgit Rathbone. Fruit is sourced from two main vineyard sites in Sussex. Wines spend at least 3 years on lees. I was really impressed by this - 2013 was not a particularly generous vintage in terms of wine style, but H&R clearly got their hands on some very good Pinot. As such this is amongst the best 2013s I've tasted, and more successful than some that rely heavily on Chardonnay.


Hoffmann & Rathbone Classic Cuvée 2013

60% Pinot Noir, 30% Chardonnay, 10% Meunier. I think this was disgorged towards the beginning of 2017. Quite a lot going on here, with fruit ranging from sweet, fresh apple juice to spicy red pear, quince and candied lemon. Lovely sweet bakery tones of raspberry frangipane tart, ginger snaps and crème Anglaise. The Pinot here touches on some of that meatier, savoury character that sings of quality fruit, with no sensation of meanness or greenness whatever. Pillowy mousse and some length and drive, helped along by the Chardonnay component. 7 g/l dosage is plenty here; at first I thought it might even be a little much for my palate, but I think it will continue to settle in over the next couple of years. A real charmer. 91/100

*I tasted this a year ago and I think it was too soon post-disgorgement - it was a little awkward. It's a different wine now.

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