English Vineyards and Wine-Tasting
Times are changing...
hen it comes to wine, it’s usually our neighbours across the Channel that get all the attention. But times are changing. There are now nearly 400 commercial vineyards across the country and many of them are happy for you to come and spit, slurp and swill the fruits of their labour.
At Denbies Wine Estate in Surrey, the biggest vineyard in the country, you can actually help pick the grapes that will eventually produce its eponymous Greenfields Brut and Surrey Gold tipples. But it’s not all hard work here: if you’d rather just head to Denbies’ atmospheric wine cellars to sample its famous vintages, that’s absolutely fine, too. Why not take an indoor and outdoor train tour of the vineyard, too – the kids will love it?
Southern England doesn’t have a monopoly on English wine-growing, though; at Ryedale Vineyards in Yorkshire, owners Stuart and Elizabeth Smith have concentrated on growing wildlife-friendly, organic vines. Why not book into their rustic farmhouse for a few days, and experience their environmentally-friendly approach first hand?
Urbanites, meanwhile, can enjoy a tipple at London’s Vinopolis . As well as wine, you can give your taste buds a serious workout by trying different whiskies, cocktails and Champagnes. And don’t forget to cleanse your palate with their delicious Spanish-style tapas. Tasty.
Cultivated since before Roman times - tuck into a platter on Mersea Island.Mersea Island
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