The annual celebration of English wine is back albeit a little later than usual this year
English Wine Week is upon us and it looks as though the sun is set to shine down on The Southern Quarter’s fantastic vineyards.
Organised by WineGB and usually held at the end of May, English Wine Week presents the ideal opportunity to get to know English wines better, as vineyards and retailers highlight the many outstanding wines available right here on British soil.
Normally the celebration is a great time to visit vineyards and enjoy the many events and promotions taking place, as well as take part in behind the scenes tours, in-store tastings and themed dinners.
While some vineyards are open for visitors to wander around the vines and visit their cellar door shops, many of the events have moved online, including special virtual #EnglishWineNight tastings on Friday June 26th.
You can keep up to date with the week’s happenings on the WineGB website and by following #EnglishWineWeek on social media but here are a few ideas from vineyards in Kent, Surrey and Sussex to get you started.
Ridgeview Wine Estate, Ditchling, Sussex
Ridgeview is inviting customers to enjoy a glass at home to toast English Wine Week while watching a digital film which shares insights from the producer’s chief executive, vineyard manager and its winemaker, into the craft of making Ridgeview traditional method English sparkling wine. The estate is offering a link and a digital code to watch “A Glimpse Behind the Scenes at Ridgeview”, with every online wine purchase throughout English Wine Week and offers free next weekday delivery. £2 for every bottle purchased goes to the charity Hospitality in Action.
Bolney Wine Estate, Haywards Heath, Sussex
To celebrate, English Wine Week, Bolney is offering free live virtual tastings throughout the week. Hosted by one of the estate’s experts, each one will focus on one of their award-winning wines, kick starting with an exclusive tour around the vineyard and a tasting of our hero Pinot Noir with managing director and head winemaker Sam Linter. The tastings take place on June 20th, 21st, 24th, 26th, 27th and 28th.
Vineyards of the Surrey Hills, Surrey
This time last year, five Surrey vineyards joined together to form a new wine region for England – Vineyards of the Surrey Hills. The collective includes English wine producers Albury, Denbies, Greyfriars, High Clandon and Chilworth Manor Vineyard. To celebrate English Wine Week and its first anniversary, the group had planned a host of events but instead has created a new mixed case of wines so people can enjoy wine from all five producers at home.
The selection includes High Clandon Halycon Cuvee 2014, Denbies Pinot Gris, Greyfriars Sparkling Rose Reserve, Chilworth Manor Rosé 2019, Albury Seyval Blanc and Albury Vermouth. It’s available at a special discounted price of £135 with FREE UK delivery.
Vineyards of the Surrey Hills will be hosting a special live tasting via Instagram with John Mobbs from Great British Wine on Friday June 26 at 7pm.
Hush Heath, Staplehurst, Kent
The Hush Heath estate is back open to the public seven days a week from 11am to 5pm. Visitors are encouraged to enjoy a free ‘DIY’ introduction to the wines by doing a self-guided tour of the estate including its nature trail.
Pick up a map from the Cellar Door and explore the picturesque vineyards, orchards, wildflower meadows and ancient woodlands which make up the 400-acre estate at your own pace. Then stop by the shop to purchase some of the wines to take away and try at home – with 25 per cent of any six or more bottles.
For more ideas of ways to celebrate English Wine Week, visit www.winegb.co.uk