Sussex is home to many glorious things, Goodwood racecourse, Brighton Pier, Seven Sisters Cliffs, Arundel Castle and a whole host of cracking vineyards dotted across the two counties of East and West Sussex.
Wineware are based in the heartland of one of the largest wine producing counties in the country, so why not celebrate our now treasured soils and showcase some of the best vineyards in Sussex! Sussex and its surrounding counties are dominated by limestone chalk soils, resulting in the region’s ability to produce high-quality grapes for sparkling wine (similarly found in the famous region of Champagne, France), also the cool climate preserves the acidity needed to make top tier sparkling wine.
The county has many new and established wineries, with some of the biggest names in English wine striving to create exquisite wines to rival the best in the World. With many award winning wines now being picked, produced and bottled within the county, Sussex is the go to for many English Sparkling Wine enthusiasts.
If you’re looking to plan a visit to Sussex and explore the counties wine tourism, now is a great time as many of the bigger vineyards are providing incredible experiences for visitors. To help plan a trip, we have selected some of the very best Sussex wineries to visit, sample a glass and enjoy the Sussex sunshine!
Address: Albourne Farm, Shaves Wood Lane, Albourne, West Sussex, BN6 9DX
Is there a tour of Albourne Estate vineyard? YES
Site Size: 11.5 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £15 > £35
Albourne Estate is a family-owned boutique vineyard overlooking the beautiful South Downs. With an impressive range of multi-award winning still and sparkling wines, every bottle of Albourne Estate is 100% grown, produced and bottled at the 30-acre site (11.5 hectares of vines).
A total of seven grape varieties are planted across the site, for the sparkling wines they use the traditional varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier. For the variety of still wines, it’s a combination of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Pinot Noir, Bacchus and Ortega.
Address: Glenmore Farm, Slider’s Lane, Furner’s Green, Uckfield, East Sussex, TN22 3RU
Is there a tour of Bluebell vineyard? YES
Site Size: 40 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £14 > £35
Established in 2005, situated in heart of the Sussex countryside on the edge of the Ashdown Forest near the famous Bluebell Steam Railway, Bluebell Vineyard Estates is home to the award-winning range of ‘Hindleap’ English Quality Sparkling Wines.
Since their first plantings in 2005, the vineyard has more than doubled in size and now has nearly 100 acres under-vine (100,000 vines) stretching across both East and West Sussex. Specialising in producing premium quality sparkling wines using the classic grape varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Pinot Meunier vines along with Seyval Blanc, Bacchus, Ortega, Chasselas and Merlot.
Address: Foxhole Lane, Bolney, Haywards Heath, West Sussex, RH17 5NB
Is there a tour of Bolney Wine Estate? YES
Site Size: 42 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £15 > £35
Bolney Wine Estate are located in the small, picturesque village of Bolney which is situated between Brighton and Crawley. One of the pioneers of the English wine industry, established in 1972, Bolney has five unique vineyard sites that focus on 6 key grape varieties: Pinot Noir, Rondo, Dornfelder, Chardonnay, Bacchus and Pinot Gris.
In January 2019, Bolney Wine Estate merged with neighbouring vineyard Pookchurch to form a 104-acre estate dedicated to increasing the production of premium still English wines.
Address: Gay Street, West Chiltington, West Sussex, RH20 2HH
Is there a tour of the Nyetimber vineyard? YES (Selected dates)
Site Size: 214 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £37 > £175
Nyetimber are probably the most recognisable and iconic of all English wine brands. Located in West Chiltington, they are the only producer in the UK to own vineyards (282 hectares) in three counties: West Sussex, Hampshire & Kent. The classic grape varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier are grown across 10 of Nyetimber’s vineyards, the largest hectarage of any English sparkling wine producer.
The winery has been the recipient of the ‘English Wine Producer of the Year’ award many times, and their distinctive shield-shaped labels can be found on dining tables at some of the world’s most exclusive and high-end (restaurants and hotels).
Address: Hobbs Lane, Beckley, Rye, East Sussex, TN31 6TU
Is there a tour of Oxney Organic Estate? YES (Throughout the Summer)
Site Size: 14 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £16 > £35
Oxney Organic Estate is the UKs largest single estate organic vineyard, located in Rye, it’s home to over 35 acres of vines planted between 2012 and 2018. Planted at the vineyard is Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Précoce, Pinot Meunier and Seyval Blanc vines to make their English organic sparkling and still wines.
The winery is actually located in a Grade II listed square oast house, once used for kilning hops as part of the brewing process. The building has been converted to house the now state of the art wine making technology required to make high quality organic English wine.
Address: Polegate, East Sussex, BN26 5TU
Is there a tour of Rathfinny Estate? YES
Site Size: 600 acres
Price range per bottle: £17 > £38
Rathfinny Wine Estate is located near Polegate (East Sussex) and is one of the newer additions of Vineyards established in the UK. Established in 2010 by Mark and Sarah Driver, it occupies the main part of Cradle Valley, on south-facing slopes in the South Downs of Sussex, one of England’s exceptional natural landscapes.
Rathfinny have over 375,000 vines planted on 91 hectares (226 acres) of the Estate, with predominantly Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Meunier for their Sussex Sparkling wines and a cluster of blocks of Pinot Blanc and Pinot Gris for their Cradle Valley still wine.
Address: Ditchling Common, Fragbarrow Lane, East Sussex, BN6 8TP
Is there a tour of Ridgeview Wine Estate? YES
Site Size: 52 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £30 > £60
Founded in 1995, Ridgeview Wine Estate is a second-generation family run vineyard producing high quality English sparkling wine. Located in the South Downs in Ditchling, the site has a unique geology and cool climate conditions, perfectly suiting sparkling wine production.
The classic grape varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier are grown across a total of 130 acres, that includes sites in both East and West Sussex.
Ridgeview is regularly served by Her Majesty the Queen and is the official sparkling wine at government receptions. Throughout their history, Ridgeview have won an impressive collection of international accolades and continue to represent the UK’s wine industry around the World.
Address: Stopham, Pulborough, West Sussex, RH20 1EG
Is there a tour of Stopham Estate Vineyard? YES
Site Size: 6 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £15 > £25
Stopham Estate is located in Pulborough, West Sussex and is home to 21,000 planted vines on the 6-hectare site that were planted in 2007. Specialising in still wines, most of the production is for white wines based on Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Auxerrois and Bacchus grape varieties, they do however make sparkling wine too, with Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
Address: Tinwood Ln, Chichester PO18 0NE
Is there a tour of Tinwood Estate Vineyard? YES
Site Size: 26 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £29 > £31
Tinwood Estate based near the county city of Chichester, started in 2007 by planting 46,000 vines over 28 acres and then a further more 38,000 vines planted over 22 acres followed in 2008. The recent planting in 2015 saw an additional 15 acres of vines being planted to increase their total vineyard area to 65 acres and 100,000 vines. Tinwood Estate have an offering of three different sparkling wines, their classic Blanc de Blancs, Brut and Sparkling Rosé.
Address: Wiston Estate Winery, North Farm, London Rd, Washington, Pulborough, West Sussex, RH20 4BB
Is there a tour of Wiston Estate? YES (April – October annually)
Site Size: 6.5 Hectares
Price range per bottle: £26.50 > £47.50
The Wiston Estate has been owned and managed by the Goring family since 1743, located south of Washington on the south facing chalk slopes of the South Downs. Situated on a 2,500ha site, the vineyard spreads across 6.5 hectares with the traditional varieties of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier planted in 2006.
Sited on a dry river valley on the upper cretaceous chalk, that closely resembles the physical and chemical composition of the World-renowned Côte de Blancs in Champagne, France.
Locations of Vineyards in Sussex
The locations and distances between each of the Vineyards based in Sussex mentioned above can be seen in the map below. The Vineyards are all relatively close together, with the exceptions of Oxney Organic Estate further out to the east and Rathfinny Estate further south than its counterparts.
Sussex is home to the warmest and direst climates in the UK, plentiful countryside and diverse soils means the county is ideal for growing grapes on its hillside locations.