Posts Tagged ‘Carr Taylor’

Penbuckle's in Hastings Old Town has a West and an East Sussex white sparkling to try

I was unusually organised and had even sorted out a discount for readers of the Resident Wine Guru column before I found out from the paper that their last edition of the year ran on the 15th!


But who knows, if you quote the article-that-might-have-been to Jackie at Penbuckle’s she might give you the quid off anyway.

Have a very Merry Christmas!

So this is the last column before Christmas, and with festive fun in the air it’s only right and proper that we should talk about bubbles.

I know that given the economic state we’re in, it’s no mean feat getting the Christmas budget to balance; and supermarkets will have deals on that are not to be sniffed at. But I will be doing my best to support our independent traders where I can.

And we can all do that with confidence when choosing our Christmas bubbly, because we have award-winning sparkling wines being produced right here in Sussex.

I was in Penbuckles – the cheese shop on the High Street in Hastings Old Town – at the weekend, and they have some lovely local wines on offer.

There’s a West Sussex and an East Sussex white sparkling to try – the Bolney Bubbly 2009 (a blend of Muller-Thurgau and Chardonnay grapes; small bubbles, lots of green apple), and the Carr Taylor Brut, made just up the road in Westfield, and regularly on show at events such as the Seafood & Wine Festival.

In fact, as a result of a bit of negotiation between the retailer, the vineyard and myself, I am glad to announce that if you take your copy of The Resident into Penbuckles, then a pound discount on the Carr Taylor Brut will be yours – making it an easy rival for any of the lesser-known Champagnes you can buy for £15.95!

All that remains to be said is that I hope you have a Happy Christmas and peaceful 2012, and remember, if you’re stuck for a gift for a loved one who likes a glass or two but who’s tricky to buy for, the newly launched (Hastings-based) Essential Wine School does gift vouchers for their courses. Why not check them out at www.essentialwineschool.com


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Here is the latest news from Carr Taylor about the harvest –

News from the vines is that we finished picking all our 37 acres by the middle of October. The late burst of autumn sunshine really brought up the sugar levels for our grapes and indications are the 2011 vintage is going to be a corker! The wines have all been put to bed for the winter, and we all have to play the waiting game until the Spring.


Sounds good.

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As I get to learn a bit more about the wine industry – both here and abroad – I sense that it is one in which there may be a few egos knocking about. 

Which makes it all the more enjoyable to meet knowledgeable, enthusiastic and thoroughly lovely professionals to talk to you about their exciting new adventure…

Louise Brown, who is currently finishing off her viticulture and oenology course at Plumpton (off you go to the sidebar if you want a link to the illustrious establishment), has just landed herself a job as assistant winemaker to Alex Carr Taylor at the family vineyard in Westfield.

The Alexis 2010 (an ancestor of which I think I tried a few years ago when I last visited) is Louise’s recommendation of the moment, and was (I am reliably informed by his mum) Alex’s first creation for the vineyard.

There are great plans afoot gradually to grow French varietal vines at the vineyard, and there is a new Tasting Centre in the offing.

Exciting times for a well-known local firm.

They have found themselves an excellent ambassador in Louise Brown.

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