This year, what special thing did I do this birthday you ask? Well, I visited England’s largest and most spectacular vineyard in Dorking, Surrey, Denbie's Wine Estate. We also got to taste some of the finest home-brewed sparkling wine, and take a tour of the vineyard on their guided vintage coaches!
As large as 627 acres of plantation, Denbie's Wine Estate is about an hour and a half away from Southampton and about half an hour from central London via car, located on the chalky white Surrey Hill, best fit for the wines, it is very conveniently in the heart of the lovely Dorking town. Established in 1984, the picturesque estate have grown their own vines for nearly 30 years now, producing about 400,000 bottles of delicious wine a year, becoming the largest producers of sparkling and table wine in UK, with international recognition throughout Europe. They also have several international awards in their belt to brag about, including multiple gold awards for their sparkling wine, their "English rose" wine, and most recently for the dessert wine too.
The fruits are generally hand-picked for finest quality between the months of october and november, which are then brewed into high quality wines of all different kinds.
As a tourist, one can stroll up to 7 miles on the foot trail across the whole estate. I personally booked the "sparkling" outdoor tour for a lovely 45 minutes guided coach tour on their cute vintage coaches that took us around the vineyard, to the best vantage points for pictures, then around the estates and back, all with a glass of their delicious sparkling wine! Apart from the vineyard itself, there are various other commodities to enjoy such as the gallery and conservatory restaurant for fine dining, their gift shops for novelties, farm shops for fresh local produce, their distillery where you can taste all sorts of wine they have to offer, and the whole place can be booked for all sorts of events too, including conferences and weddings. Plus, the town of Dorking itself is pretty impressive with its giant zinc coated rooster round-about, the homely town, and the welcoming pubs. For all the infos on getting there, booking a tour and/or the gallery restaurant, visit: http://www.denbies.co.uk/.
Now, for the highlights of the trip:
Denbie's is indeed a place to must-visit for the wine enthusiasts to truly experience the charm of a vineyard and witness where the magic happens... It was indeed an absolute treat to see all the heavily laden vines with red and white grapes of all shapes and sizes, soon to be harvested in about a month's time from now.
Now, I don't always celebrate my birthday... But when I do, I like to make it last a lifetime! And boy! I must say, wasn't this an incredible touch to getting old with class and style!? ;) :p Here's to making through another year :p