Wine vintners sell wine and also produce their own. Looking at UK vintners, mostly all are located in the south-east of England’s Sussex or Kent counties because of the chalky soil and sunshine. Wine production in the UK goes back to pre-Roman days but it seems clear that the Romans introduced the vine.
Today, UK vintners are competing in the global wine industry, especially with sparkling wines, and popularity is growing at a fast pace. There are over 579 vineyards listed on the English Wine Producers website. Some are small and started only a few years ago and some cover many hectares of land and are the oldest in the country. A few of the top UK vintners are:
Three Choirs – located in Wickham and one of the oldest vineyards making both reds and whites with an experimental area where new varieties are emerging. Both still and sparkling wines are sold locally and worldwide. Three Choirs was the first UK vintner awarded a gold medal at Vinexpo in Bordeaux, France.
Nyetimber – in business for over 20 years and one of the largest of the UK vintners with over 170 hectares. In 2006, guided by winemaker, Cherie Spriggs, Nyetimber entered the international market. Their famous wines include Blanc de Blancs (100% Chardonnay), Classic Cuvee (a blend of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier), Rosé (a blend of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir) and Demi-Sec (100% Chardonnay)
Ridgeview – Sussex-based and family-owned, this UK vintner uses traditional methods to produce the highest quality sparkling wine. CEO Tamara Roberts has been named Sussex Business Woman of the Year. In May of 2016, Ridgeview was named as the official suppliers for Downing Street receptions.
Nutbourne – Based in a 19th-century windmill in the South Downs, this family-owned business is famous for its still white wine. Winning the gold medal in 2015 at the International Wine and Spirit Competition for this wine, Nutborne was the first UK vintner awarded. Their sparkling wines are also reviewed as spectacular. The Jazz in the Vines event takes place at the vineyard in August.
UK vintners’ wines are available at supermarkets and high street chains, independent retailers, online and by mail order. The UK vintner can be proud of the growth and quality of their wines recognized everywhere today.