Heppington Chardonnay 2020 – English White Wine

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To us the wine has the feel of a classic Chablis but delivers a purer, more subtle fruit flavour. It is still young and will develop over the coming two years delivering more integration and savoury notes. At moment it is a great wine to sip and enjoy on its own but would partner well with seafood, salmon or white fish, simply prepared.

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We have previously offered the Pinot Gris from this estate but this is the first Chardonnay to be released by Heppington. The Heppington vineyard is located a few miles to the south of Canterbury and was planted in 2016. The owners Henry and Gill replaced their blackcurrant bushes with a mix of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Gris and Meunier. The vineyard sits on a geological strata of chalk, limestone and clay (peppered with flint) few miles east and above the village of Chartham. The gentle south facing slope affords good light and warmth and, being the highest point in the area, helps reduce the risk of frost.

In 2018 Henry and Gill sent their grapes for sparkling wine to Hattingley so we may well be tasting their fizz next year. The still wines are made at Defined Wine, only a few miles from the vineyard so that the grapes arrive in great condition. 2020 was a very fruitful year at Heppington and the yield was looking good for sparkling wine but in order to make still wine the grapes needed to be riper. A vendage vert, or green harvest, was required and the owners reckon that they cut away 30% of the forecast harvest so as to get the required concentration and sugar levels.

The result is a clean, crisp white with a fine line of mineral acidity creating a fine structure for the green apple and lemon fruit to follow. To date the Heppington wines have a sense of coolness, poise and minerality, typical of cool climate wines from specific soils.



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