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Harvest Reports

Harvest Report 2020 – Sunshine and Storms

The wettest winter for one hundred years knocking 2014 off its wettest-ever perch kicked off a growing season that has been far from typical.  This has been a year for experienced growers to navigate thoughtfully. From wet to dry in the blink of an eye March brought sunny days, very little cloud cover and slightly […]

Harvest Report 2019 – A Warm Year with a Late Harvest

April saw average temperatures give way to much warmer conditions in the second half of the month. May was mildly warmer than average. A cool early June saw a warmer than average end. July saw above average temperatures with a heat spike on the continent spreading its warmth into the southern UK with a very […]

Harvest Report 2018 – Picking Happiness

Optimists are saying that 2018 sets the benchmark for wonderful summers to come; the more cynical are already referring to it as a once in a lifetime result. Either way this year the grapes are breaking records with best-ever sugar levels and a cornucopia of quality and quantity. The gods have been smiling. For those […]

Harvest Report 2017 – A Season of Extremes

The English Sparkling growing season typically runs from the beginning of April to the end of October, with harvest in the East Sussex High Weald generally in early to mid October. But 2017 proved to be a season of extremes. We started with drought. March was unusually warm. Bud burst came forth 2-3 weeks early. […]

Harvest Report 2016 – Atypical but Superb Quality

2016 was an atypical, but ultimately superb quality, vintage & growing season. A rain-soaked winter gave way to a cool but dry late spring. Late frosts were a menace that we managed to dodge. Many producers were forced to race around their vineyards at night lighting bougies & using tractor hauled hot air machines to […]

Harvest Report 2015 – Sacrificing Volume for Quality

Bud burst came slightly early in the middle of April. A slightly cooler May slowed things back to about average. The fruit load looked promising. A relatively dry period ensued, with the formation of good bunches & the additional warmth spurred growth. However, fruit set although optically even occurred over a longer period than usual, […]

Harvest Report 2014 – A Wet and Sunny Year

The growing season commenced after the wettest winters for over a century, with rainfall at +265% of the long-term average; it’s an understatement to say it rained. Fields were super-saturated, but the soils stayed warm. No snow fell, there were few frosts. Just wet, wet, wet. March and April were warmer than average, drier and […]

Harvest Report 2013 – The Year of Pinot Noir

We started the year shivering and coated in mud as chilly winds and heavy rains blew over us. The season got off to a miserable start: cold, wet and disheartening with vine growth lagging by a month as we reached May. But, mercifully, May was magical: warm and dry with stable high pressure and that’s […]

Harvest Report 2012 – Weather Frustrations & Failure

This year was a year of weather frustrations and failure. We started with a March drought, having to water the young vines in our High Field (Lakestreet). The vines were growing like Topsy until April 1st when they stopped in their tracks with the arrival of three months of chilly, damp “bank holiday weather”, broken only […]

Harvest Report 2011 – The Year of Great Chardonnay

2011 was the year of great Chardonnay for us, both in terms of quality and quantity. The red grapes were soaked by rain at flowering, so we lost half the potential fruit load through lack of pollination. The Chardonnay, however, flowered earlier in the warm dry days of early May, thanks mainly to a very […]

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