You are currently viewing The English Wine Diaries, episode 48 – Jacob Leadley and Zoe Driver

The English Wine Diaries, episode 48 – Jacob Leadley and Zoe Driver

The Black Chalk winemakers chat about the debut wines from grapes grown on the Hampshire estate

Joining me on this week’s episode of the English Wine Diaries is Jacob Leadley and Zoe Driver, winemakers at Black Chalk Vineyard in Hampshire. 

In 2009 Jacob left a comfortable job in the City to re-train as a winemaker at Plumpton College. Since then, he has worked in the English wine industry including seven years at Hattingley Valley, where he helped produce a number of award-winning sparkling wines. In 2015, he launched Black Chalk together with his brother-in-law Andrew Seddon and is currently the chair of Wine GB Wessex. 

Zoe fell in love with winemaking when she worked for a sparkling winery in Australia while travelling the world. On her return to England, she became the UK’s first Winemaking Apprentice at Hattingley Valley, where she was quickly promoted to assistant winemaker. She joined the team at Black Chalk in 2019 and in 2021 graduated from Plumpton with a masters in Viticulture and Eenology.

We talk about their latest wines – the first to be released from grapes grown on their estate – making wine in a power cut and the truth behind their Little White Lie.

Find out more about Black Chalk by visiting and following @blackchalkwine on Instagram and Facebook.

Thanks for listening to this episode of The English Wine Diaries

This episode of The English Wine Diaries is sponsored by Wickhams, The Great British Wine Merchant. Visit to see their award-winning range of English wine with free deliver on orders over £40.

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