Bluebell Vineyard, England
If you have never tried an English wine before – now is your opportunity.
The vineyards of England are generally located in the warmer southern counties where the milder influences of the gulf stream have an important effect, as our northern hemisphere vineyards need a longer cooler growing season than in Europe to produce top quality grapes. More than 500 vineyards are in production across the UK and bottled annual sales has reached 3 million bottles, with Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Bacchus the most planted varieties.
The original 4ha of Bluebell Vineyards were planted in 2005 with the desire to produce high quality English sparkling wines. Situated on the fringes of the Ashdown Forest on sandstone soils, there are now 10 ha under vine, predominantly Pinot Noir and the classic Champagne varieties with some experimental Riesling and Gewurztraminer. The vines are carefully nurtured and hand harvested before small bath fermentation. Blending the wines before the second fermentation and ageing for a minimum nine months(13 months in practise) imparts a distinct imprint of terroir to the Champagne quality.