Rabbit Hole Pinot Noir 2020
Simpsons Wine Estate
Region: Kent

Tasting Notes

An old school Burgundian-styled Pinot Noir. Aromas of cherry, raspberry, toast and earth. On the palate, this is refined and elegant, with sour cherry, red currant and toast notes, along with some tart strawberry. The finish is long, but the fresh acidity makes it a great partner with food. Enjoy lightly chilled with planked salmon, grilled porkchops or baked Portobellos with goat cheese.

Pinot Noir—chiefly associated with the Burgundy region of France— is grown around the world, mostly in cooler climates. The grape’s tendency to produce tightly-packed clusters makes it susceptible to several viticultural hazards involving rot that require diligent canopy management. When young, wines made from Pinot Noir tend to have red fruit aromas of cherries, raspberries and strawberries. As the wine ages, Pinot has the potential to develop more vegetal and earthy aromas that can contribute to the complexity of the wine. Thin skins and low levels of phenolic compounds lend Pinot to producing mostly lightly-coloured, medium-bodied and low-tannin wines that can often go through phases of uneven and unpredictable aging. One of the primary grapes used in Champagne, it is prized for its ability to craft world class sparkling wines.

Elham Valley is an unspoilt seam in the North Downs of the county of Kent, where the contours of the land, the climate and the soil could scarcely be improved upon for viticulture. The intensely lime-rich chalk soil forms part of the same chalk ridge that stretches from southern England to the French Champagne region and on to Burgundy. The English climate may be marginal for viticulture but its relative austerity—where expertly handled—and long, cool ripening period is ideally suited to creating still and sparkling wines with pure variety flavours, elegant acidity and subtly sophisticated aromas.

Simpsons Wine Estate is located in one of the sunniest corners of the British Isles. Proprietors Charles and Ruth have further safeguarded their vines against extremes in climate by selecting sloping vineyards that face almost due south, ensuring heat accumulation in the day, and excellent cold air drainage at night. The maritime influence is also crucial to the success of these vines. The property is less than eight miles from the coast on three sides, which helps insulate the fruit against intense variations in temperature. Roman Road Vineyard was the original Estate Vineyard, so named for the road the Romans marched upon in their first invasion of England in 43 AD, bringing along vines with them. Railway Hill was planted in 2016 for another 20 hectares of south facing vineyards, again in chalk soil.

Hand-harvested, the grapes were hand-sorted and de-stemmed before being gently crushed. into vats using gravity. During fermentation, the juice was pumped over daily, with a portion receiving manual punchdowns to get full extraction of tannins and flavours from the skins. Once fermentation was complete, the wine was pressed off the skins into second use French oak barrels for four months of aging. Bottled the following spring, the wine is unfined and only lightly filtered.

Wine Type: Red

Variety: Pinot Noir

Classification: N/A

Orientation: South and east

Appellation: N/A

Gradient: Between 50 and 90 masl

Soil: Chalk soil

Farming Practices: Minimal Intervention. Accredited by the WineGB Sustainability Programme

Residual Sugar: 1.7 g/l

Alcohol: 12.5

Malolactic: No

Botte Size: 750 ml

Acidity: 6.1 g/l H2T

Other Practices: Sustainable