English Sparkling Wine: A Visit to Tinwood Estate in Chichester

We were bound for Chichester, the sun was shining and Tinwood Estate were busily readying an private tasting of their English sparkling wine for 3 thirsty bloggers. Monday = won. (Disclosure: We were guests of the Tinwood Estate team – but all musings are mine!)

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

It’s so wonderful to see how beautifully English wines have been developing over the last decade (how on earth have I lived here for so long?). Interestingly, French champagne houses have been buying up land in the UK and planting vineyards over here…

The Tinwood Estate’s vineyards are situated in the heart of West Sussex at the foot of the South Downs National Park – a 10 or so minute drive from Chichester. Since the first planting in 2007, Tinwood has established a reputation for producing incredibly fine English sparkling wines including The Estate Brut, the Blanc de Blancs and a Rosé. 

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

Our job? To explore the vineyards and sip these delicious sparkling wines. You would never guess this used to be a simple lettuce farm.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

Their purpose-built tasting room is a stylish, modern space featuring a glass-covered veranda and outdoor patio, overlooking the Tinwood vines. It was a delicious location to spend a sunny afternoon.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

In 2006, ordering the vines to be planted, Art went to New Zealand (clearly a man of excellent taste) to do a Vintage and increase his knowledge of viticulture.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

Since then they having been honing the craft of English sparkling wines (in conjunction with Ridgeview.)

They also have luxuriously-appointed lodges where guests can wake up to glorious views of the Tinwood Estate’s vineyards. 

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

The perfect spot for exploring Chichester, and unwinding.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

Their team run daily fun wine tasting events that everyone can enjoy. It’s a great day out, enjoying the sun and a glass of bubbles after seeing the vines on a walk around the vineyard. The excellent Vineyard Tour & Wine Tasting takes 1.5 hours and includes 3 glasses of sparkling wine and a tour around the estate. Afterwards tour guests are welcome to stay for an extra glass or a cold bottle of wine of their choice.

So we did.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

They were all delicious but we fell for the Blanc de Blanc – so much so that we ordered a bottle to enjoy over their cheeseboard… 

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate
English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

…(featuring honey from hives not more than 20m away.) Delicious!

It reminded me of many leisurely afternoons we spent in Napier, dimbling along the winery estates, and the dreamy trip we made to Champagne last year. All without the hassle of air travel.

English Sparkling Wine Tinwood Estate

Best part about it all – if you’re not able to make it down to Chichester in the near future, their sparking wine is available for ordering via the Tinwood Estate website. Bliss.

What’s your favourite kind of sparkling wine?

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