Those views. Vines hugging gentle slopes. Wildflowers dancing in the breeze. The soft undulations of Romney Marsh. The saline-tinged sea air. And, this year, the canopy of plum and apple trees planted in honour of Her Majesty The Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. This could only be the Gusbourne Estate in southeast England.
Since the first vines were planted here in 2004, the winemaking team at Gusbourne has employed meticulous attention to detail and a spirit of innovation with the fruits of the estate’s unique terroir to produce sparkling wines that have consistently wowed the industry.
And alongside the highly crafted vintages in their hand-polished bottles is a warm spirit of relaxed hospitality.
Since opening its doors in 2017, The Nest—Gusbourne’s cellar door and tasting room—has hosted thousands of wine lovers exploring the estate as part of a vineyard tour.
And this summer, international visitors and UK staycationers can look forward to a seasonal programme of hosted tours, special picnics, new releases and new menus throughout the season. Take your pick…
Take a tour
Informal yet highly informative, Gusbourne’s three categories of vineyard tour take visitors on a gentle walk and talk through the vines. Tutored tastings by highly knowledgeable, ego-free experts introduce guests to the core range of sparkling wines—Brut Reserve, Rosé and Blanc de Blancs—as they explain why Gusbourne only uses its grapes from its own vineyards and only releases vintages that they deem to be ready.
With or without lunch, and sometimes with a taste of a rare or library vintage, all hosted tours include the opportunity to soak up some English sparkling intelligence via the English wine timeline at The Nest—full of fascinating, artfully exhibited facts and artefacts.
- The Vineyard Tour (£25pp) decants a walk amongst the vines and a tutored tasting into a two-hour experience.
- The Discovery Tour (£75pp) adds in some special bottles and a lunch of seasonal sharing platters, prepared on site by The Nest Kitchen. Around 4 hours.
- The Estate Tour (£95pp) relaxes guests into a three-course lunch over some exclusive rare-release and limited-edition wines.
Unpack a picnic
Fresh air, fresh food, vintage wine, English countryside… This summer Gusbourne has refreshed its picnic offering with the best of Kent and Sussex produce and the latest release of its best-selling Brut Reserve.
An ideal pour for a wicker basket packed with artisan cheese and charcuterie, vine tomato salads, homemade bread and super-sweet Kentish strawberries. Make your way to the estate’s new picnic space, accessed via the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Green Canopy, where a Bedouin-style open canopy awaits just in case one of Kent’s famous sunny days decides not to show up.
Hand-crafted wooden tables—spaced for privacy—await. An idyllic way to spend a day in the Garden of England.
Celebrate English Wine Week
To let English Wine Week 2022 (June 18 to 26) pass by without a visit to an English vineyard is an opportunity missed. Throughout the week, Gusbourne will be marking this year’s EWW with two special dining events and one new still-wine release.
- Chardonnay Guinevere 2020 will be making its debut appearance at a special tutored tasting lunch with premium smoked fish producer Alfred Enderby (Sunday June 19). An inspired pairing of two highly crafted products whose origins are all about place, time and commitment to quality.
- And on Friday June 24, foodies can raise a toast to English Wine Week as part of a specially created four-course lunch menu from Chef Patron Daniel Smith and the team at the highly acclaimed Fordwich Arms when they set up their kitchen at Gusbourne’s Garden Room overlooking the vines.
Here’s to another vintage summer in the Garden of England.
Book a tour or special event at gusbourne.com/tours