Reviewed by Kathryn Carr
Wine made from grapes grown in England? Wine not! The perfect present for Dad this Father’s Day.
If your Dad enjoys a glass of wine, treat him to a special bottle this Father’s Day. The UK is a major consumer but only a minor producer of wine (accounting for just 1% of the market) but this country does have successful vineyards so why not support them and buy British.
Last weekend, I opened a bottle of Lychgate 2016 white wine from The Bolney Estate. The vineyard is located on the edge of the South Downs, about 14 miles from the UK’s south coast, yet the resulting wine transported me from our dining room table to a quaint bistro somewhere on the continent. The Lychgate white wine is summer in a bottle. This easy to drink, light-bodied blend of white grapes perfectly matched my homemade fish pie. I’d describe it as off-dry, fruity and citrusly aromatic. There is definitely something peardrop-esque about it, which for me evoked happy school day memories and put a smile on my adult face. Just like the sweets, this wine is incredibly moreish. My other half’s palate detected notes of apple and apricot and he enjoyed a glass with his cheeseboard supper. The zestiness of this wine means it also pairs well with spicy food; it isn’t overpowered by and certainly holds its own alongside strong flavours. If your Dad enjoys a Chinese, Indian, Thai or such like takeaway, a bottle of Lychgate white would complete his meal.
Many of us may not have tried wine made from grapes grown on home soil as traditionally our wine industry has struggled against a cold climate. But with summers getting warmer and consumers wanting to cut down on ‘food miles’, British vineyards have established strong roots. Most wine drinkers will have enjoyed a glass or two from Italy, France, the US, South Africa, Chile and Australia (to name some of the biggest wine producing countries) so why not opt for something a little less predictable for Dad.
Bolney’s story began in 1972 when its founders Janet and Rodney Pratt planted three acres of vines. Today, the wine estate, still run by the same family has grown to 39 acres, has a state of the art winery and has won titles such as ‘UK Wine Producer of the Year’ at the International Wine and Spirit Competition.
Bolney’s Lychgate proves that UK wine is no longer the ‘pour relation’. If your Dad hasn’t met the produce of our country’s own grapes, it’s time to introduce them. A bottle is the perfect thank you for a top Dad, in fact, he’ll be the one thanking you.
For more information about Bolney’s wide range of award-winning English wines and to buy a bottle or two, visit www.bolneywineestate.com. You can also purchase gift boxes, gift vouchers and accessories.