Denbies Vineyard Update!
Welcome back to the vineyard blog with all things to do with grapes.
It’s been a rather wet cool start to 2023 but we’re happy to say that all varieties have gone through bud burst and so far, we have avoided the worst of the frosts. Fingers are all crossed that this continues.
The Kings Coronation bank holiday saw us plant 10,300 new vines. This is a project to refresh some of the tired areas of the vineyard with younger, more productive varieties.
- 6,000 Pinot Meunier. Pinot Meunier is one of the key ingredients to making outstanding sparkling wines but can also be used in the some very interesting still wines. Meunier is French for Miller, this is because as the vine grows the leaves look like they have a fine dusting of flour covering them. We have a small planting of Pinot Meunier on site already, when you next take a walk on one of our footpaths keep an eye out in ‘The Park’ Block of the vineyard for the silver-white coated leaves.
- 4,000 Muscaris. This is a new variety for Denbies. After a few years of small trials, we had Muscaris stand out as one of the best options for our site. It is a PIWI variety, this means that it is more fungus resistant than other varieties. Muscaris is a crossing of SOLARIS and MUSCAT. It has been described as giving Mango, Lychee, citrus and floral notes.
- 300 Sauvignon Blanc. Yes, you read that correctly, the trophy variety of Marlborough, New Zealand and the Loire Valley in France is now being grown in the Mole Valley. Sauvignon Blanc has been planted at Denbies in the past but due to the location of the planting it wasn’t viable. This has now been planted in a much more viable section of the vineyard but is just a trial for now with only a little planting. If the results are positive then you never know, Mole Valley Sauvignon Blanc could be hitting shelves in a tasting room near you.
On the note of Sauvignon Blanc, Bacchus has been known as ‘England’s answer to Sauvignon Blanc’ for years. Here at Denbies, the vineyard and winery team has produced some spectacular Bacchus wines in the past, the 2022 vintage is no exception. Keep an eye out June 2023 for the latest edition of this wine, which promises to be one of the best.
As I have been a bit lax on updating this blog, I shall also mention that vintage 22 was a whopper. The team out in the vineyard managed to bring in a huge 407 tonnes of grapes that kept the winery team up late into the nights producing what looks to be some of Denbies best wines ever. Fingers crossed that we manage to get another year like that.
Keep an eye out for the team out in the vineyard, we are just starting bud rubbing to concentrate growth into the shoots we want and to also help with disease later in the season.
That is all from the vineyard for now, I shall try to update this more regularly.