It’s a damp afternoon in late May that Camilla Bladon picks me up from Bentley station in Hampshire. After a short drive we arrive at Jenkyn Place, her family’s vineyard.
Jenkyn Place produces sparkling wine from vines grown on its south facing chalky slopes.
The conditions on this former hop garden are perfect for the traditional Champagne varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Meunier and Pinot Noir and they have been producing fine English fizz after the first vines were planted in 2004.
The Caperberry Collective has been invited to help in the planting of 2000 new Pinot Noir vines which will increase the vineyard’s potential yield to 40,000 bottles a year.
As somewhat of a horticulturalist, I jumped at the chance and was soon adding my vine to the new 2 acre plot.
Camilla’s father Simon shows us around the existing vineyard from where he produces a Brut, a Blanc de Noirs and most recently an excellent Rosé.
Back in his beautiful walled garden, Simon opens a few bottles and we get down to the business of tasting. These wines are truly impressive; it is no wonder they have picked up numerous prestigious awards. There are subtle differences with each vintage with a real elegance coming through with maturity.
There are now an estimated 6200 acres under vines in Britain and with passionate producers like Jenkyn Place leading the way; wines in this country are really something to celebrate.
Go To: jenkynplace.com
To celebrate the new planting, Jenkyn Place are offering you an exclusive private vineyard tour for up to 12 people!
COMPETITION TERMS & CONDITIONS: Jenkyn Place is not open to the general public but runs tours from April – October.
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