|England's newest vineyard to target export market|
|Written by Carol Emmas|
|Tuesday, 09 October 2012 13:48|
The owners of Domaine de Sainte Rose in France have bought 35 hectares in East Kent with the view of targeting its sparkling wines at the export market.
British producers Charles and Ruth Simpson bought the land south of Canterbury to plant traditional Champagne varieties; Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.
The pair will remain in the Languedoc-Roussillon at Domaine de Sainte Rose. They have enlisted the advice of UK viticultural consultant, Stephen Skelton MW, who has inspected the land and believes it is ideal for the proposed grape varieties.
The Simpsons see it as an exciting new challenge but one that wont detract from their core business in France.
They said: "We can definitely see potential synergies between the two businesses as the UK is our main export market (both Waitrose and Majestic list Domaine Sainte Rose wines). We are also well positioned to target export customers as we have an established international client base - something that many English wineries currently lack. As planting increases in England and supply begins to exceed demand, English wine producers need to look at developing an export market. We aim to build on our established reputation and to continue to surprise people with compelling projects such as this."
The couple moved to France 10 years ago to follow their dream of producing wine in the Languedoc-Roussillon region and now produce wines made from 12 different grape varieties.
Domaine Sainte Rose will produce its first sparkling wine as part of their research for the project, a Blanc de Blancs, from 100% Chardonnay grapes grown at the domaine, which will be ready to launch in July 2013.