What comes into your head when you are thinking about some of the best tasting wines in the world? Most people would likely think Chilean, French and possibly even Italian which is fair enough, as within these countries come the best and most expensive wines in the world.
It would seem that the last place anyone would think of trying a wine from is here in the UK. Well believe it or not we have quite a few vineyards that produce some fantastic tasting wine. Why are people not trying these wines?
As previously stated an English wine is just not heard of which is why many people will just not go near it. This does not mean that the wine is not of a good quality and it is remarkable on just how tasteful an English wine from a very small vineyard can actually be.
So where could you go to taste Britain’s attempt on producing wine?
The countryside of course and it would seem that when it comes to producing fine English wines, Devon is the place to go.
So what is the best approach to take when it comes to wine tasting in Devon? Well firstly I would say it is best to go there for 4-5 days as the vineyards are spread out across the area. This will not only give you time to enjoy each vineyard but allow you to have a relaxing time knowing that you do not need to rush.
It would also seem that somewhere like Torquay is a great place to stay during the period of time you are in Devon. Not only is it a very relaxing, it is also nearest to the centre of all of the vineyards that you should think about visiting.
So let’s say for example you are planning on staying in Devon for around 4 days and you are interested in visiting various vineyard’s in the area. Where should you be going on what day and why?
Travelling to Devon for many people is a fairly long journey and you are going to be pretty tired when you arrive at your destination. However there is a vineyard very close to Torquay and is known as the Old Walls Vineyard. One of the really nice things about starting here is that it isn’t a long drive from the area and they can offer you a tour of the place for a very small amount of money. They also offer out wine tasting events.
For such a small vineyard they make quite a lot of wine and they vary from Rosé to Father John Country Wine which is fruity in flavour with a warming Elderberry taste. You will have to take into consideration that if the weather is not great you may have to settle with wine tasting over the tour itself.
Finish the evening off by buying one of their bottles, heading back to the hotel and enjoying a glass of wine over dinner.
After the journey the day before and the trip to the vineyard you will certainly need a bit of a lie in and this is why day 2 will only involve another small journey to the second vineyard on the list.
This time it is to Yearlstone Vineyard, they have featured on the BBC for their award winning wines and the Countryfile team loved it there. The vineyard is actually the oldest in Devon and you cannot just tour and taste the wines here but sit down to a fantastic lunch overlooking the Exe Valley.
Yearlstone specialize in dry white wines but make a variety of others too.
You should have recovered from the initial trip over by now which is why Day 3 involves two stops to two more of the best vineyards in Devon. First on the list is Eastcott vineyard which is located just off the A386. One of the great things about this vineyard is that if you really like it there you can stay in one of the cottages on site. This is something you could think about for a return visit.
The next portion of the day should be spent at the Down St Mary Vineyard. You can have a brilliant tour of the facility as well as try the wines that they have on offer too. The one thing this place seems to have over some of the others is great disabled access so take this into consideration.
The last vineyard is known as the Oatley Vineyard and is last on the list because it is really on the way out of Devon.
This is certainly not a vineyard you want to miss out on if you like white wines because this is what they do best. Their first vintage came in 1989 and they have been going strong since.
Many of these vineyards do not operate often in the Winter so it would be wise to book your trip in the Summer if possible. On top of this weather conditions often get in the way in the Winter and tours have to be cancelled.
Future Of English Wine?
Sales of English wine are on the increase and with many retailers such as Waitrose starting to sell them they can only grow more popular in the coming years. It looks like 2010 is going to be another great year for English wine!
For places to stay in Torquay look out for:
TLH- self catering torquay
Devon-Online - B&B torquay
Torquay – Information, hotels torquay