his was a very busy year with little time to update the website.
Fortunately we escaped the spring frosts which affected many vineyards and good flowering conditions produced a potentially big crop. The weather wobbled in August and early September and we
wondered if the grapes would ripen sufficiently. However nature balances things up and October was warm and dry enough to ripen the grapes although we delayed starting the harvest by a week. Volume
was around 25% up on our average and we had a huge crop of cider apples as well. Lots of hard work made easier by our loyal band of volunteer pickers and machinery operators.
The annual Wine Competition for vineyards in the Midlands and North of England was held in mid November with over 100 wines entered. We were pleased to receive Gold and Silver medals for our
Steeplechase Sparkling 2011 and 2012 respectively and Best in Class for our Naseby 2014 red.
We also entered the CAMRA East Midlands Beer and Cider competition in Nottingham again and won Best Bottled Cider for a second year, this time with our King Richard III still cider.
June - Having entered our King Richard III cider in the Northamptonshire Food & Drink Awards we hear that we have reached the Finals.
August - We entered the regional English Wine Competition and were awarded silver medals for our Steeplechase and Naseby red and bronze for Tickled Pink leading to
our winning the Grower Winemaker of the Year Trophy for the second time.
The crop was much less than expected but due to an excellent autumn the quality looks to be outstanding.
In April we were excited to send a case of our Steeplechase Sparkling Wine to the British Consulate in Zambia.
In August we were awarded the Grower/Winemaker of the Year cup at the annual Mercian Vineyards Association competition for ther 3rd
time in 4 years.
As members of the Taste of Harborough group we participated in the new Spirit of
Harborough event showcasing local products on May Bank Holiday Monday by hosting vineyard tours. We look forward to being part of a larger event in 2018.
More information on Spirit of Harborough and Taste of Harborough on www.spiritofharboroough.com o
During 2016 Harborough Movie Makers made a film of 'A year in the vineyard' which has been seen at Harborough Theatre and
numerous local village halls. Harborough Movie Makers are happy to put on shows to aid local groups fund raise and can be contacted via their website
The 2017 harvest was good for both grapes and apples and the wine and cider is coming on nicely.
Undoubtedly the best year since we planted in 1991. We started picking in mid September and the harvest was finished in the first week of October, which is when we
usually start. It is a vintage year when both quality and quantity go hand in hand.
We joined 'Taste Harborough' which a new marketing organisation for local food and drink producers and retailers. A successful event was held in the The Square in
Harborough and more events should follow.
We will be in certain Waitrose stores during the year giving tastings of Steeplechase sparkling wine from time to time.
We will be at the Blaston Show, near Hallaton, on Sunday 30th June and at Harborough Classic Car Rally on Sunday 7th July.