Jenkyn Place Vineyard, Hampshire


Simon Bladon

The Challenger

There are many different sparkling wines, and Champagne tends to have the best reputation. Sparkling wine can only go by the name ‘Champagne’ if it has been made in the Champagne region in the north east of France. However, the wine-making method used in the region, the Méthode Champenoise, is used across the world where it is now called the méthode traditionnelle. As well as using a distinctive method, the Champagne region does have a fairly unique climate and geology that gives the wine made there a distinctive flavor. Lying north-east of Paris, the region has a much cooler climate than most wine-producing areas.

The south of England possesses many of the same qualities as the terroir of the Champagne region, both the cool climate and soil type. As an English Sparkling had already taken the trophy for the Best Sparkling Wine at the International Wine and Spirit Competition 2005, perhaps it’s no wonder that Champagne producers Louis Roederer have been looking at buying vineyards in the country. As British Sparkling becomes more and more popular all over the world, Fin has decided to be the first to import an English Sparkling to Thailand, in fact two, one white and one Rose from Jenkyn Place in Hampshire. Jenkyn Place Vineyard is a small and exclusive estate situated in idyllic countryside with gentle, south-facing slopes that straddle the 100 meters contour of the North Downs in Hampshire.

The vineyard had been created by Simon and Rebecca Bladon who bought Jenkyn Place in 1997. Designed and planted with excellence in mind, the vineyard produces top-quality English sparkling wines. The first 1,700 vines were planted at Jenkyn Place in 2004 with more vines planted every year since. The vineyard currently extends to twelve acres and has 15,000 vines consisting of a mix of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier grapes, the classic varieties of the Champagne region. Different clones and rootstocks of each wine variety have been selected in order to ensure interesting and complex wines.