Albourne Estate 40 Vermouth is a first from West Sussex – a golden, semi-dry Vermouth – 40 refers to the number of botanical in this stunning fortified wine.
The recipe of the botanicals is a secret but it includes rosemary, thyme, rose petals and chamomile alongside citrus peel, saffron, cardamom and coffee beans. The base is a blend of sparkling wine bases, which forms 75% of this Vermouth, consisting of a high percentage of Chardonnay as this is the dominant sparkling variety grown at Albourne Estate. Some of the base wines have spent a few months in oak which contributes added complexity.
The vibrant aromas leap out of the glass. There is a bright, bold hint of orange peel upfront and gentle blossom characters which are reminiscent of an English meadow in late summer. These aromas are followed by succulent, juicy grape flavours which combine with the botanicals to provide an outstanding, limited-production Vermouth (the first batch is just over 2000 bottles). It is rich with excellent structure and a round mouth feel, and has a perfectly balanced touch of sweetness without being cloying. A tiny hint of oak supports this Vermouth of great complexity and depth.
Alison Nightingale (owner and winemaker at Albourne Estate) has produced a delicious Vermouth which is distinctive in its appearance and the resulting wine is the outcome of extensive development with input from Italian wine consultant Salvatore Leone; they spent hours blind tasting the vermouth using different botanicals before finalising the blend. Alison decided to produce this Vermouth at 18% abv which means that once opened, it will keep in the Fridge for 4 – 6 weeks.
We think it is delicious on its own over ice, or with a dash of soda. However, each bottle comes complete with a Neck Tag with several cocktail suggestions, some of which are listed below. As it is semi-dry, it can also be used in place of a sweet wine with pastry based dishes, strong cheeses and nuts. Why not experiment?! This Vermouth was one of the most popular wines at our recent English Wine Tasting of Albourne Estate Wines.
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“Deliciously herby, nutty vermouth. It could be used for a rather delicious negroni, but it’s cracking on its own, too.” Fiona Beckett; Feast Magazine, Guardian August 2018
“This aperitif could soon knock gin off its perch….boutique Sussex winery uses 40 botanicals in its award-winning vermouth. Cardamon and saffron notes shine through along with a very pleasing herbaceous astringency. Enjoy it on its own!” Olive Magazine, August 2018
“This vermouth tastes as amazing as Albourne’s wines do and you can genuinely appreciate the character coming from their own grapes. Rich with fantastic structure and a round mouthfeel. Perfectly balanced sweetness”. Cherry Constable; The Drinks Writer
“40 Vermouth is an outstanding product, both in flavour and appearance. It is fantastic to see Albourne Estate utilising their base wines in this way and creating a vermouth which reflects their distinctive, amazing style. Whilst the botanicals hold centre stage, the characters obtained from the base wines shine through and make this a cohesive addition to their portfolio.” Cherry Constable: The Drinks Writer
40 Vermouth also picked up a Master Award at The Spirits Business Competition: The Panel described it as having flavours of “fresh grape and herbal muskiness”, the expression was also praised for its “baked nectarine” nose.
- Elegant Dry Negroni – 50ml of 40, 25ml of a good quality gin and 25ml Campari.
- English Spritz – one part 40, three parts sparkling English wine, such as the Albourne Estate Blanc de Blancs.
- English Rose – Albourne Estate’s own cocktail recipe – 50ml of 40, 25ml of a good quality gin, 150ml quality tonic water, a splash of rose water, optional sugar syrup to taste and a sprinkling of dried rose petals.
- The Elderflower – 75ml of 40, 75ml elderflower presse, 25ml gin and a dash of Angostura Bitter served over ice and with a slice of apple.
- Americano – 50ml of 40, 25ml Campari, topped with 50ml of good quality Tonic water.