Just flicking through some of the headlines from the weekend and came across this article from Patrick Schmitt MW writing in the Drinks Business. He had a chat recently with Richard Balfour-Lynn, owner of Hush Heath winery in Kent.
Big take home from the article is that it’s not good enough for English wine to just “expand”. We need to develop the markets and the method of selling, be it cellar door, wine tourism or retail here and abroad. Going into this blind, thinking it’s just an easy lifestyle industry is a sure fire way to lose your shirt, and you’ll be lucky to survive the next 5 years.
I’d like to add that setting up vineyards and wineries right now without any consideration to sustainability initiatives is criminal and destined to be on the wrong side of consumer trends. But that’s just me.
Check out the full article on the Drink’s Business Website…
The UK’s love affair with Prosecco is well known. Less well known is that Prosecco’s production method is very different to some of the other famous bubbles around the world, including Champagne, Cava, and the world class bubbles being made in the UK. That is until now, as a Norfolk based wine producer, Flint Vineyard, has released a Prosecco-style english fizz, and I can’t wait to give it a try.
In Part 2, Amelia and I explore that “special relationship” those two berks Tony Blair and George Bush kept banging on about, by having a look at English and American fizz options for Christmas. We’ve got the super fresh Exton Park Brut, and the sublime Domaine Carneros Classic Cuvée…enjoy!
English Wine is now flying the flag high and proud. The bubbles especially are scooping up plenty of international awards, and even the great and the good of the famous region of Champagne are buying up land on our fair shores to take advantage of the climatic change. So it’s time to really look forward to this year’s English Wine Week starting this Saturday, the 27th May 2017.
I had a great day out of the Big Smoke, last week, down to Kent, to go freeze my nuts off and do some digging in the dirt. Doesn’t sound all that appealing does it? Well how about if I clarify it a bit, as we were planting vines for the first Champagne Grand Marque to officially land on our shores. Domaine Evremond, a new venture for Champagne Taittinger, is now the proud owner of row after (slightly wonky) row of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier, as the quest for increasingly swanky and gorgeous English bubbles hots up.
Wine in the UK is booming. Ok, ok, so albeit from a small base, but in the worrying outlook for the next few years for most of the country as the politicians negociate with a rather pissed off Europe, the wine industry is one place where we can look proudly. It was with this in mind that I gratefully accepted an invitation to go check out a new winery opening up in the far South East of Kent.
As I said yesterday, we have a thing in the family about Christmas morning. We get up, someone throws the bacon under the grill, we toast up then butter the breakfast muffins, and tuck in with a bottle of sparkling wine…well I say “a” bottle, obviously it’s not just the one. We’ve got a big family these days!
As I mentioned last week, there’s been plenty of net research, book reading, and general back ache from sitting down infront of the computer too much this week. It’s been all about my gin project for my next WSET exam. And guess what? I haven’t finished it!! I know, crap isn’t it?!
Is it annoying if I start this post off with a quick rant? I was in the middle of a town just 50 miles from the North Sea coast and it was impossible to get hold of crab meat…or fresh fish for that matter. I ended up with king prawns with the starter, all the way from Indonesia. I genuinely fail to understand why we’re still persisting on the 1980s model of stacking shelves with no concern for the carbon footprint or local businesses. But sod it, what do I know, eh? Let’s get back to the wines…
I have a Norwegian wife and an Italian brother in law. Luckily they’ve been in the UK for long enough now to know that English food is amazing. Not a lot of people from outside (infact inside as well) the country know that. We’ve got great meats, vegetables, fruit, and (being an island) great fish when the farcical EU quota system allows us to keep any of it!