Wine tasting isn’t something you’d associate normally with the UK, with most of the wines on the shelves of our supermarkets being imported from Europe, South America and even South Africa; yet right on our doorsteps lie some of the best wine tasting locations in the UK.
Denbies Wine Estate, Surrey
Although you may associate vineyard visits with the sun soaked slopes of the south of France, Denbies Wine Estate, is open year round and in deference to the unpredictability of the British weather, the public exhibits are mostly indoors or under cover and you can even visit much of the 265 acres of vineyards on a train that operates from March to November. Of course, there’s an opportunity to sample some of the award winning wines those grapes go into.
Monday to Saturday 9.30am to 5.30pm (all year)
Sunday 10am to 5.30pm (April to October)
Sunday 10am to 5pm (November to March)
Ryedale Vineyards, Yorkshire
No need to worry about appointing a designated driver when visiting this vineyard as you can stay the night. The vineyards and its bed and breakfast house are just to the east of the beautiful city of York and its many attractions. Established in 2006, the six acres produces an award winning dry white wine. For booking and information visit: http://www.ryedalevineyards.co.uk/
This family owned and run vineyard in the Vale of Glamorgan, not far from close to the bright lights of Cardiff, is the oldest in Wales and produces whites, reds, rosés and award winning vintage sparklers. There is plenty of wildlife to see on site and the owners pride themselves on their eco credentials. The picturesque site is home to a friendly and well managed bed and breakfast guest house and tours can be booked by appointment. To arrange a tour, book accommodation or for more information, visit: http://www.glyndwrvineyard.co.uk/
Despite what the name suggests, the Penarth Vineyard is nowhere near Penarth which is just along the coast from Cardiff, instead it is located in Powys, mid Wales. Its most famous and best received wines are the sparkling, blush coloured pinot noir and pinot meunier though their chardonnay and traditionally red pinot noir varieties are exceptionally fruity, have also won awards and been compared to the best the Burgundy region of France has to offer.
For information of tours and tasting (including courses) visit: http://www.welshwine.co.uk/
Cairn O’Mohr, Scotland
You’d be right in assuming that this is no ordinary winery. In fact there is not even a vineyard nearby. The wines produced at Cairn O’Mohr are exclusively, fruit wines and award winners at that. The winery is on the site of a run down, eighteenth century farmstead and wine production began in 1987. Fruit including apples and pears as well as wild growing berries and herb leaves form the perthshire hills are used to make delicious fruit and herb infused wines.
Visit the website for tour booking information and the often amusing musings of wine maker Ron, visit http://cairnomohr.homestead.com/
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