The UK is facing a dream harvest for 2018, with the atypically warm, sunny summer providing a bumper crop of high quality grapes.
The last five years in particular have seen a huge increase in area under vine, and with yields expected to be good UK wine producers are looking at a record-breaking crush.
The sunshine has advanced picking dates by two weeks or so – the first grapes were brought in last week – and quality is exceptional.
From Wales to the Wash, growers are reporting big volumes of healthy grapes, with little regional variation.
‘The whole UK wine industry is excited about the potential this harvest brings which will probably lead to the highest level of production ever,’ said Simon Robinson, Chairman of WineGB and owner of Hampshire-based Hattingley Valley. ‘Growing conditions across the country have been ideal and this shows in both excellent quality and high yield.’
The UK wine industry is on a roll at the moment. Vineyard area has doubled in the last ten years, and the country took home a record haul of medals from Imbibe’s Sommelier Wine Awards this year, picking up more gold medals than Champagne.
The across-the-board good news from this year is particularly welcome after 2017, when many growers lost a significant amount of crop due to spring frosts.
Featured images courtesy of Biddenden Vineyards, Kent