Oxymorons are a delightful aspect of the English language.
Last year, stood in the freezing cold watching my beloved football team play Cambridge United, I chuckled as I saw the words “Amber Army” scrawled on the back of the terrace.
The next day’s papers had a girl who had been “found missing” on its front page along with a story on the “Hell’s Angels” who were up to no good again – “pretty ugly” stuff, I imagine.
Wild rose, by definition, must fit this classification too.
A wine variety that is typically quite tame, often engineered and easy-to-drink is quite contradictory to a word that has untamed connotations.
But in this instance, it works perfectly.
Black Chalk, an oxymoron in itself, has released its second vintage of its English sparkling rose this year made of grapes hand selected from Hampshire’s best chalkland vineyard sites.
The wine won a gold medal at the 2019 Champagne & Sparkling Wine World Championships, with a blend of 41 per cent Pinot Noir, 38 per cent Pinot Meunier and 21 per cent Chardonnay.
The aging – part stainless steel and part oak barrel – gives it brilliant complexity, as well as a multi-layered palate.
It is certainly moreish, perhaps too much so, but as Mark Twain would say, “I can resist everything but temptation”.
Long live the oxymoron.
Black Chalk Wild Rose 2016 (RRSP £40) is available via: www.blackchalkwines.co.uk