All aboard

You know how there's always one person that's forgotten something? As the 24 weary souls gathered on a cool, dark morning it was our party leader that had to make a dash home and back, pulling in just as the coach arrived. Hopefully not a sign of things to come. And it was a day of firsts for me - my first mobile wine tasting, which went very well with only a few small spillages - and my first taste of English wines. It will most certainly not be my last. I've heard the stories for a few years now of the Champagne houses buying land in and around the south coast of England to make use of the chalky soils as the temperatures creep up, and now I understand why. Three examples apiece from Three Choirs and Chapel Down, two from Nyetimber, a Denbies, Camel Valley and a Ridgeview. The sparkling English wines we tasted were easily comparable with their French equivalents, and when you consider the prices, there's no question as to which holds greater value. If you've never partaken, The Chapel Down Classic Cuvée was definitely the one for me. A brief stop at The Famous Blacksmith's Shop at Gretna Green for lunch (no one took the opportunity to marry as far as I know) and we were headed for the Hull ferry and our overnight berths.

#Alsace2012 #English #ThreeChoirs #ChapelDown #Nyetimber #Denbies #CamelValley #Ridgeview

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