The recent spell of warm weather has been very well received by Denbies Wine Estate. In the past 12 months, the Dorking vineyard has undergone an extensive replanting programme.
In 2017, 30,000 of the classic ‘champagne/sparkling wine’ grape varietals, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay were planted on the optimum south facing slopes of the Dell to meet the increasing demand for English sparkling. Pinot Noir planting has increased by 30% and is proven to be the most versatile grape grown at Denbies. It is used in all of the sparkling, rose and red, premium range of wines. This has continued into 2018, with further plantings of the Pinot Noir, there has also been an experimental trial on a smaller acre plot of 6 new varietals.
This coincides with a comprehensive investment drive in the winery which involves complete modernisation of the winery.
‘Our sustained programme of new plantings, as well as planned winery investments will enable us to meet the increased demand for English sparkling wine’. commented Christopher White, Denbies CEO. ‘moreover, we will also make sure that we support growing demand for our full range of still wines, from entry level up to the premium ranges.’
This is an exciting time for the English wine industry, Denbies currently supply several major supermarkets in the UK, including Waitrose, M & S, Co-op, Sainsburys and Lidl and selected independent restaurant.
Towards the end of last year, Denbies also received planning to convert the existing Farmhouse Accommodation into the UK’s first ever Vineyard Hotel. This is expected to open in the middle of 2019.