Sommelier turned winemaker Sergio Verrillo, and his wife Lynsey run this London-based urban winery specialising in cool climate Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. They source fruit for their wines from growers all within a few hours of the city, and vinify under a railway arch in Battersea. Established in 2017.
Following graduation from Plumpton College with a degree in 'Viticulture & Oenology' Sergio became a travelling winemaker to learn his craft. This led to working vintages in California, Burgundy, South Africa and New Zealand. Now settled back in the capital, Black Book have been making waves with their carefully made, unique and distinctive wines – and earning accolades in the process from many industry professionals. This is English still wine at the top of it's game.
The foundation for the wines is the sourcing of the best possible fruit and they have carefully selected a handful of growers who care as much about this from a range of English terroir across the South East.
Sergio has a real appreciation for classic winemaking methods which is reflected in his techniques.
Overall a minimalist approach with indigenous yeast for primary and malolactic fermentations and where possible, low to zero sulphur use. And so in the cellar the philosophy is simple – tradition with innovation where appropriate.
A majority of the wines are fermented in old french oak between 228L to 500L sizes with a small portion in steel tank. All of the wines are aged "sur lie" for a minimum of 6 months. Wines are generally bottled unfiltered, unfined.
Fruit for this bottling is sourced from the Clayhill Vineyard in Essex. These Pinot grapes are from burgundy clones.
A warm 2018 vintage allowed the introduction of a higher element of whole clusters in the fermentation. 10% new oak was used for added structure and depth.
Reminiscent of old-world pinot noir showing elements of sour black cherry, raspberry, and violet. The palate offers up sweet spice, cracked black peppercorn, and chalky tannins. Great extraction and concentration of flavour on this juicy wine.
10 year ageing potential.