Litmus Wines are simply out to make the best English wine possible. A number of vineyards are pushing the boundaries and doing great things with sparkling wine. We believe the time has come to up the ante with still wines.
We select small parcels of fruit from distinguished sites in the south of England. One of the most notable vineyards is on the hillsides of the North Downs in Dorking, 40km south west of London. These plots are 120-150 meters above sea level and boast a soil structure that is geologically similar to that of the Champagne region, with a rich topsoil of loam and flint supported by calcium-rich subsoil. The soil structure is fundamental to our wines unique minerality. The south facing slopes enjoy maximum sunlight in the growing season. The vineyards are dry farmed (un-irrigated) and low yielding (around 15HL/Ha).
All our fruit is hand harvested and each component is fermented separately in new and old French oak barriques. Richness and concentration comes from a further eight months on yeast lees before bottling. Throughout the winemaking process there is little intervention, helping to give the wines a strong sense of place.
Moving away from the traditional simple and floral characteristics of many English wines, we have achieved the finesse, minerality and complexity that is the hallmark of all great Northern European Wines.
Established in 2008, Litmus Wines is run by Australian duo John Worontschak and Mike Florence and is based at Denbies Wine Estate in Dorking, Surrey.
John Worontschak is a winemaker and international wine business consultant with over 30 years experience. John has worked with wineries in virtually every wine producing country in the world providing advice in all aspects of the wine industry.
Mike Florence has worked in the wine industry since 1994 and has extensive managerial experience in many different facets of the wine trade. Prior to joining Litmus Mike spent 9 years running the International Wine Challenge. Organising every aspect of the world's largest wine competition has provided Mike with an enviable knowledge of the world of wine.
We go by the name of Litmus as we are all about change. As Litmus changes colour at different acidities so we change grapes into wine, passion into businesses, and distribute wines that turn acquaintances into friends. The Litmus butterfly and colour band motifs, from the colours of young white to old red wine, represents the enthusiasm we have to change things for the better.