Hoffmann & Rathbone Classic Cuvee, East Sussex

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Hoffman and Rathbone
Grape Varieties
Optimum Drinking
Within 3 years
Wine Style
Rich complex style of sparkling wine
Alcohol by Volume
Natural Cork
Style / Colour

Vibrant and energetic with a satin mousse and rich aromas of sweet almond, hazelnut and raspberry through to a beautifully balanced palate full of finesse.

Producer Note

Hoffmann & Rathbone is a boutique winery located in England’s Sussex-Weald region, founded by husband-and-wife Ulrich Hoffmann and Birgit Rathbone who have a passion for crafting artisanal wines. Ulrich Hoffmann has a wealth of winemaking and viticultural expertise having spent 22 years working around the world, from the prestigious Rolf-Willy estate in Baden-Württemberg, to Chateaux de Fieuzal and Haut-Gardére in Bordeaux, Artadi in Navarra, and Cain Vineyards in the Napa Valley. He may have continued had he not fallen in love with the Sussex countryside and its cool climate, which offers ideal conditions to produce delicious sparkling wines. Following an ethos that the perfect sparkling wine cannot be rushed, they focus on precision, passion and combining traditional methods with a modern, minimalistic approach, creating tiny volumes aged for long periods with care and patience. Hoffmann & Rathbone has proved that English sparkling wine is now on par in terms of quality, with the best sparkling wines in the world, never imitating, but with that quirky English personality of doing things differently. 


The grapes come from Ford Farm Vineyard in East Sussex, in the Sussex Weald an area of outstanding natural beauty. The vineyard comprises three parcels on one farm, which are south facing and surrounded by woodland which offers maximum protection from wind and excellent heat retention. This sheltered, warm and dry site offers ideal conditions for growing grapes to produce concentrated sparkling wines. The vines are Guyot trained at elevations of between 50 to 80 metres above sea level. The soil is clay, with underlying sandstone, which offers good water retention properties to nourish the vines. The vines are cultivated using sustainable practices; under-vine weeding takes place to control weeds, herbicides are not used, with solar panels for electricity and boreholes for water. A wildflower meadow, fruit orchard and woodland promote bees, wildlife, and biodiversity. The harvest often takes place two weeks earlier than most, with the fruit being hand harvested into small crates.


The fruit was meticulously selected and whole bunch pressed, gently separating the juice from the skins in three parts before natural settling took place. Fermentation lasted 14 days at 15°C with selected yeast ‘sleeping beauty’ which dates back to 1895, in stainless steel tanks, large format 500 to 600-litre oak barrels, some chestnut barrels and a terracotta egg. Wine was kept sur lie up to five months, naturally settled, blended, filtered, and bottled in June of the following year. Periodic riddling took place. This cuvée was cellared for seven to 10 years before being disgorged. The wine is low in total sulphur and on the lower end of Brut in terms of residual sugar. 

Tasting Note

An exuberant sparkling wine with a satin mousse and rich aromas of sweet almond, hazelnut, peach and raspberry. Beautifully balanced on the palate with a lovely sense of proportion, intrigue and finesse.


Pinot Noir 60%, Chardonnay 30%, Pinot Meunier 10%

The technical information on this wine is correct to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. This information may be subject to change according to vintage

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