This July, the first ever Welsh Wine Week will see a calendar of virtual events hosted by vineyard owners and friends from the hospitality, food and drink industry, take place via social media and video platforms.
The week’s free events are designed to give audiences in Wales and beyond the chance to discover the country’s growing number of vineyards and reveal its range of award-winning vintages, including those that have already reached international notoriety.
There are almost 30 vineyards in Wales, and all are owned by independently-minded pioneers using Wales’ unique micro-climates to produce small quantity, terroir-driven, quality wines.
Following a period of non-existent tourism for several months due to the coronavirus pandemic, participating Welsh vineyards hope the variety of events being organised will encourage sales over the remainder of the summer as business re-starts. Thanks to the lifting of lockdown restrictions on many outdoor spaces in Wales, most Welsh vineyards have reopened to the public for outdoor visits, with indoor restrictions due to lift on 3rd August.
Details of all vineyards hosting tasting events are on the official site and attendees are encouraged to buy a bottle beforehand to sample during the tasting event to be part of the experience. The growing list of events currently includes:
- Ancre Hill’s Richard Morris take audiences through the art of biodynamic viticulture and winemaking on Facebook Live. See the passion for yourself as he and his wife Joy tell the story of Ancre Hill’s journey to being one of the UK’s foremost biodynamic wine producers.
- Join Colin & Charlotte Bennett of Gwinllan Conwy Vineyard on Facebook Live for a proper North Wales wine and seafood celebration. This session will consist of a cooking class with Menai mussels ‘two ways’ with classic moules mariniere and Welsh version of moules Normandes with cream and Pant Du cider. The dish will be paired with wine from Gwinllan Conwy and Pant Du.
- White Castle Vineyard will be taking part in a virtual tasting, hosted by community centre ‘See No Bounds’.
- Join Moses Medizza, head sommelier at Coast Restaurant, Saundersfoot, tasting wines from across Wales. This Facebook Live event hosted by Velfrey Vineyard in Pembrokeshire will also include a chance to win a vineyard tour and Adopt-a-Vine package.
- Amanda Stuart Robson from Jabajak vineyard will host a food pairing session with rose and white wines from Jabajak’s White House Wines range.
- Join Judith Dudley of Parva Vineyard for an online vineyard tour to discover the unique history of this family owned farm vineyard in Tintern.
- Ryan Davies of Llanerch Vineyard ‘Cariad’ will host a wine tasting session on Facebook Live.
- Robb Merchant of White Castle Vineyard will be doing a Vineyard Ramble on Instagram Live
- Join Colin of Gwinllan Conwy vineyard and Tim Watson of ‘The Grape To Glass’ for a live Welsh Sparkling wine tasting. Using their knowledge and experience, Colin and Tim will be tasting the best that Wales has to offer
Welsh Wine Week is organised by the Welsh Drinks Cluster, funded by Welsh Government, which works in partnership with vineyards, retailers and wholesalers to promote the industry and its production of world class products.
Food & Drink Wales Industry Board drinks representative, Norma Barry, said: “The fantastic line up of events for Welsh Wine Week, and high profile supporters of the occasion, demonstrates the wide range of exceptional wines produced in Wales, with each vineyard having their own unique story to tell.
“You don’t need to be a wine connoisseur to get involved in Welsh Wine Week. The week of events is open to everyone to discover more about the excellent quality of wine produced here and sample varieties from different parts of the country, while learning a bit more about our Welsh wine producers.
“Despite some challenges in the industry this year, Welsh Wine Week is a great example of the collaborative spirit of Welsh vineyards to drive the industry forward and continue to grow year on year.”