City Girls Five-Star Visit To Bolney Wine Estate
Sussex has become increasingly famous for the high quality wineries in the area. The warm and dry climate is ideal for growing grapes - or at least more so than the rest of the country, and the vineyards are beautiful here.
Just a few years ago someone might have brought a novelty Sussex wine to a dinner party, but the attitude towards English grapes and the wine they can produce has changed, with still and sparkling wine from the area becoming wine staples.
Just less than half a year ago I was offered some of the best sparkling wine I have ever had, which raised my interest for Sussex wineries. So when City Girl Network were invited to visit the new winery at Bolney Wine Estate, I didn’t hesitate.
Located just a ten minute car ride away from Haywards Heath, in picturesque scenery close to the village of Bolney, the Bolney Wine Estate seems to be untarnished by urban living.
Driving through fields with horses and farm animals before ending up in Foxhole Lane feels like a jump to a completely different world from busy Brighton.
The estate tricks your mind into thinking you are in France, with lavish green vines in neat rows being nourished by the sun. The view to the South Downs and its distinctively British features however serves as a reminder that you don’t need to travel to France when we have it all on our very own doorstep.
The Bolney Wine Estate ́s new winery gives an interesting peek behind the winemaking process, and what happens in the process from vine to wine. With 3000 litre stainless steel tanks the only of the curiosities of the winery for someone like myself for whom the wine process is a mystery.
The Estate offers wine tours around the 39 acre vineyard, and visitors get the chance to sip smooth Pinot Noir, while standing next to the same grape variety that it was made from.
It is difficult to choose which wine to taste next after the first sip of their sparkling wine Blanc de Blancs makes me convinced that I will never drink anything else in my life. There are still many varieties from Bolney Estate that I cannot wait to try, like their much praised Chardonnay and a variety of other sparkling wines, with the Cuvée Noir piquing my interest.
Pinot Noir is light in colour and has a smooth and fruity taste, far away from the bitter Pinot Noirs I have had before. Their crisp and citrusy Pinot Gris and the smooth Blanc de Blanc Brut which was good were my stand out favourites. It is no wonder, since the South East of England has soil very similar to that in Champagne, France.
However, it is not only the soil that dictates how the wine will eventually taste -- the wine making process is a lot more complicated than that, as I learnt from their sales executive Nick Hutchinson.
The tour around the vineyard is informative and interesting, and it leaves me wanting to know more about the wines of England. Walking across the beautiful vineyards is an experience that will not be easily forgotten.
While the delicious wines make the Bolney Estate well worth a visit, it is the pristine scenery that make the vineyard stand out from the crowd. The Estate is extremely instagrammable with their beautiful wines and delicate and neat rows of grape vines. They even have their own restaurant!
The Bolney Wine Estate offers great experiences, both for those who usually go for the bottom shelf in their local Tesco, as well as wine connoisseurs. They give a sneak peek into the world of wine.
Understanding the process of wine making and the importance of soil and grape varieties, allows us to make more educated decisions when we get our next bottle, and maybe next time you will consider buying English wine knowing your getting a quality bottle, that is going to taste amazing.
Visit their website for more information on where to find them, their delicious wines, year round events and wine tours here.
Written By Saara Maria