What does the term “English acidity” refer to?

A. The high acidity in sparkling wines from southern England

B. The relatively low acidity in some Champagne wines that were originally made for the British market

C. The artificial flavor of wines that have been manually acidified with tartaric acid in order to boost their low natural acidity

D. It’s a euphemism for wines that are very high in alcohol which masks the natural acidity in the wine, causing that acidity to seem almost nonexistent


England’s sparkling wine producers commonly describe their wines as having “English acidity,” by which they mean—a lot of it. Many English sparklers clock in at 8 to 9 grams of acidity per liter; Champagne by comparison often comes in at 5 to 6 grams. The best English sparkling wines, as a result, are racy, nervy, starched, crisp and have a nice “bite.” By the way, the meteoric rise of a small but significant sparkling wine industry in England has been one of the 21st century’s most unlikely if inspiring surprises. If you haven’t yet tried a sparkling wine from southern England (where the soils are an extension of the limestone soils found in Champagne), you must. The wines are fantastic. My favorites include Gusbourne, Nyetimber, and Digby—all available in the U.S.

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