English Wine week and dreams of holidays
English Wine Week runs this week, 19-27 June 2021
English wine producers and retailers geared up to celebrate English Wine Week which is running this week until Sunday 27 June. Wines of Great Britain (WineGB) report sales of English wines continue to go from strength to strength.
Wine behind the label covers 23 of the top English wine producers with a full profile plus 16 producers listed under additional wineries and wines of note.
WineGB toasts growth across the board, as latest industry figures reveal sales of English and Welsh wines increased by around 30% in 2020 over the previous year, showing the ever-growing thirst for home-grown wines amongst wine lovers. This has been further boosted by the boom in wine tourism and an increasing number of consumers buying direct from the winery, either online or at the ‘cellar door’. Industry data also shows that nearly 2000 hectares of vines have been planted in the last 5 years, doubling hectarage over that time, making wine production one of the fastest-growing agricultural sectors in the UK.
The popularity of English wines is reflected through the retail sector too. Multiple retailers such as Waitrose & Partners and M&S have reported a huge growth in sales in the last 12 months*, with specialist retailer Majestic reporting a 99% growth in still wines, and The Wine Society saw its sales increase by 200%*. Independent wine shops are also seeing the benefits as consumers shop local, with the likes of The Oxford Wine Company reporting an increase of 86% year on year.*
*See WineGB full press release here and notes to editors for full figures.
English Wine Tourism blossoms as Staycations continue to beckon….
There are over 700 vineyards in Britain today with many open to the public offering a range of experiences.
In 2019, pre pandemic, Wine behind the label featured some English vineyards to visit and you can see these here. Links to the winery websites were given so do visit these blogs to check up on current visiting arrangements.
The WineGB website features links to a variety of wine trails:
Last December the Wine behind the label team dreamt of holidays.
With over 4,000 wineries with full profiles, over 7,000 wineries covered with their wines and approaching 27,000 wines rated in the current 12th edition of Wine behind the label for instance, there is no shortage of information to keep you up to date and enable you to draw up your wish list of wine Regions to visit also wines to seek out.
At that time we were dreaming of taking a spring or early summer break in the Loire. It felt easily accessible with only a ferry hop across the channel.
From the Introduction to the Loire section in Wine behind the label:
“The Loire is perhaps the most diverse and certainly geographically the most extensive of all France’s classic wine regions. Inevitably there is a vast difference in styles from Nantes on the Atlantic coast to the heart of the Auvergne. The Loire drains 20% of France and its source is only around 100 kilometres north of the Mediterranean”.
As the pandemic has progressed and as a result a trip has not yet been possible this year. However, for ideas for when we can get away have a look here to see what you might do.
In the meantime, the Staycation Rules!
In conclusion, for the time being the English vineyards offer a host of possibilities.