Exton Park, sparkling wines from Hampshire

These notes accompany our in-depth profile of Exton Park

Exton Park, Brut NV, Hampshire, England
bottle The base is from the 2013 vintage with reserve 2011 and 2012. It is 60% Pinot Noir and 40% Chardonnay. Lovely palate lemony-straw colour, with a fine, steady stream of tiny bubbles. Delightful nose, the hint of baked brioche, the very cool apple fruit, the touch of floral character, very cool and charming. Only 7g/l residual sugar, with a palate that has real intensity, with an almost sherbet-lemon brightness, lovely hints of fruit sweetness, and then a long, agile character with some richness and toast from lees-aged reserve wines adding texture and depth to offset that ultra-fresh acidity. Gorgeous wine, perfect balance. 91/100. 17 months on the lees, no malolactic. 11.5% abv.

Exton Park, Blanc de Noirs NV, England
A similar pale, fine colour, 100% Pinot Noir from three blocks, each with different aspects, soils and clones, so giving nice components for blending. Very fine nettle and bruised fruit character, very authentic, with touches of orange and apple, and attractively fruity and complex. Residual sugar is 10g/l. The palate is a little rounder, with gorgeous mid-palate sweetness and more fruit than the Brut, very ripe and juicy pear and apple, great length and persistence, the mouse fine and creamy. Terrific. 92/100.

Exton Park, Rosé NV, Hampshire, England
Lovely gentle peachy-pink colour and streaming bubbles. Made from the two Pinots, with colour coming from a few hours in the nitrogen-sparged press. A little earthiness and damp forest floor leafiness. The palate has small red berries and a lovely gentle strawberry, then more keen, sweet but tart raspberry fruit, with juicy acidity and a real mineral, almost ozone/seaside freshness. The refined fruit sweetness is lovely against pure acidity into the finish. 92/100. 11.5% abv.

Exton Park, Rosé 2011, Hampshire, England
Mostly Pinot Meunier, and probably will not be released. Delightful touch of copper to the colour and a pleasing leafiness and toast. Some creaminess to the flavour too, you could almost imagine it had been in oak for some time, a delightful sweet berry fruit and a sense of delicacy and lacy refinement. Lovely freshness. 90/100.

Exton Park, Blanc de Blancs 2011, Hampshire, England
Not on the market yet, but will be launched hopefully later this year. The Chardonnay was very special in this year, and Corinne thinks the next vintage will not be until the 2014. 100% Chardonnay, this has a lovely golden hue, with some toffee and nutty notes, with lovely bruised fruit and leafy notes, real complexity and richness. The palate pushes through with immense precision, the cool and zesty and pith lemon rind and that seashell mineral richness again, gives this lovely balanced and focused length. That minerality is so pronounced from these chalky soils. 93/100.

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