Litmus Wines, Litmus Red Pinot 2018

RRP £29

It’s an odd name but it’s called that to distinguish it from its sister wine, the Litmus White Pinot. This fine red will change your mind about English Pinot. I’m a sceptic – I’ve had quite a few still whites that are delicious and (almost) worth the hefty price tag, but English Pinots have always seemed rather thin and weedy, lacking either a mid-palate or a finish, or leaving a memory of astringency. John Worontschak, the unassuming but veteran winemaking consultant who runs Litmus Wines (he also runs winemaking at Denbies Wine Estate), sources the grapes for Litmus from across southern England. There’s some grown-up winemaking behind this red: destemming, cold-soaking, punching down for fermentation on skins, it’s moved into new and older French oak barriques for malolactic fermentation and then has a further 21 months in oak and four months in bottle. I don’t care if he foot-trod the grapes himself listening to Leonard Cohen under a full moon: this Pinot Noir is unquestionably one of the best English reds I’ve tasted. Fresh, delicately fruited, nicely tannic and supported by a fine acidic backbone delivering a delicious wash of juice at the end, it’s serious enough to match game and other autumnal red meats (and actually, just about any dish you care to drink it with). Classy, elegant, robust; it’s pricey but it’s got the whole of English still winemaking on its shoulders. Splash out.

Score

Wine Details

Colour

red

Wine Style

Still

Grape Varieties

Pinot Noir (100%)

Alcohol

13%

Bottle size

75cl

Drink dates

2020 - 2025

Origin

Country

England

Region

South East

Tasting Information

Blind

No

Tasted by

Adam Lechmere

UK Stockist

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