Google Rating

Contact Us

Baldwins Farm, Newent,
Gloucestershire, GL18 1LS

01531 890223

2022 is the Perfect Year for Three Choirs, One the Oldest English Vineyards, to Produce a First Release White Wine

2022 is the Perfect Year to Produce a First Release White Wine

We first produced a “New Release” in the late 80’s, early 90s. It was a tongue in cheek response to the then popular Beaujolais Nouveau red wine that was always released on the Third Thursday of November. People would rush across the channel to grab their bottles and race back for parties and gatherings in the UK.

As society has become more responsible (in theory), the cost of travel along with the tightening of drink-driving and speeding regulations has seen “Beaujolais Day” diminish and disappear from the wine buff’s calendar. Yet in the 90’s and Noughties we continued to produce our New Release and have the fun of an English Vineyard exporting it to France and raising a few eyebrows along the way.

Wine Production 2022
First Release Wine Production

But it wasn’t a gimmick from a winemaker’s perspective and the wines were generally very well received from wine writers such as Malcolm Gluck, Matthew Dukes and Oz Clark to name a few. The wines were made from the first grapes to be picked, usually some of the ripest and flavoursome, producing a crisp, fruit driven wine bursting with youthful exuberance.

We now only produce it in exceptional years when the feeling is right in the winery. An early harvest gives us so much more choice when putting the blend together. This year we are selecting the best combination from Siegerrebe, Solaris and Madeleine Angevine.

The quality is very good this year. A long hot, dry summer, followed by some gentle rain and a dry, mild picking season has produced some of the best grapes we have seen for several years. So this is the perfect year to produce our First Release White wine. A crisp, fresh, zesty wine with a hit of aromatic fruit character and an off dry, lingering finish.

First Release Availability

Our First Release will be available from Thursday 17th November, following in the tradition of the Beaujolais Nouveau release day (3rd Thursday in November) It will sell at £14.99 / bottle.

Subscribe to receive a notification of when the 2022 First Release Wine will be available to order.

English Wine: A Quick Guide

Once upon a time, English wine making was little more than a hobby for a small number of private post-war pioneers. Today, English wine is serious business, making its mark on a world stage and widely celebrated for its incredible quality. When exactly did the English wine resurgence happen? And why?

To answer those questions and more, we’ve put together a quick guide to English wine. It features some of the wine questions we are asked here at Three Choirs Vineyards in Gloucestershire 

When did grapes come to England?

Grapes came to England with the Romans. At first, grapes were probably used as ornaments to remind Romans of life back in Italy; vines were probably grown in England a little later to satisfy the Romans thirst for wine. 

But it was when the Norman nobles arrived with William the Conqueror in 1066 that viniculture really took off in England. 

At the time of the compilation of the Domesday Survey in the late eleventh century, for instance, vineyards were recorded in 46 places in southern England, from East Anglia through to modern-day Somerset. Although much of this wine was being produced to be used as communion wine in monasteries and on ecclesiastical estates. 

Wine production continued in England throughout the Middle Ages and into the 16th century (by the time King Henry VIIIth ascended the throne there were 139 sizeable vineyards in England and Wales). Most vineyards were connected to monasteries and with the Reformation most vineyards disappeared as the monasteries fell into disrepair.

It was not until 1936 when a man called George Ordish planted vines in Wessex and the South of England, that there was a rediscovery of English wines and winemaking. Thankfully, more pioneers followed in his footsteps and thus began a rapid increase in the number of English vineyards, with a particular boom of commercial vineyards in the 80s and 90s. The rest, as they say, is history.

How do you grow grapes in England?

As you’d expect, vines need the right conditions to thrive and grow, which is why not all regions in the UK are wine-producing. Even in the best wine growing regions, such as the south west (where we are based) and the south east, our cooler climate makes wine growing a challenge. England also has one of the shortest growing seasons in Europe, which means we must choose grape varieties that can fully develop flavour and complexity whilst retaining a greater level of freshness and vibrancy in our wines.

Harvest Time at Three Choirs Vineyards
Harvest Time at Three Choirs Vineyards

To grow vines and grapes successfully at home (which is more than possible) you need the right spot – your warmest, sunniest and most sheltered corner, ideally south-facing where the soil is well drained. 

We can offer a consultancy service for those wishing to plant vines on a commercial scale.

How many vineyards are there in England?

There are approximately 164 wineries and 522 commercial vineyards in England with 150 vineyards open to the public.  We are one of England’s oldest vineyards, and we’re open to the public [Saturday & Sunday] for wine tastings.

Unsurprisingly, the majority of viticulture takes place in the south, where the climate is slightly warmer and drier. Although as temperatures rise with climate change, wine making may begin to proliferate across the entire country. For now, the majority of commercial vineyards tend to be located in the southern strip of England’s coast, from Cornwall to Kent.

What are the most popular grape types grown in English vineyards?

English Sparkling Wine Classic Cuvee n/v by Three Choirs Vineyards

The most popular grapes grown in English vineyards are Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, and Bacchus, as well as Pinot Meunier and Ortega. 

Here at Three Choirs Vineyard, we produce a  Bacchus  – it’s an elegant, dry and aromatic wine, popular with our diners and our weekend guest. We also produce a gold award-winning classic sparkling wine, Classic Cuvee n/v, shown on the left, made to traditional methods and to exceptional quality. 

Interestingly, sparkling wine still makes up the lion’s share of English wines being produced per year. Still white wine comes in at second, whilst the remaining come from red wines or rosé wine.

We produce two red wines and one rosé wines at our Gloucestershire vineyard: a Ravens Hill , a Pinot Noir Precoce and a Rosé .

We also have a number of white wines: Siegerrebe , Coleridge Hill and Willowbrook 2018.

Where can I taste English Wine in the UK?

With nearly 150 English vineyards open to visitors, it might be hard to decide where to go to taste English wine in the UK. 

At Three Choirs Vineyards not only can you enjoy tasting our English wines in the beautiful, rolling Cotswolds’ countryside, you can also stay amongst our vines overnight. 

Vineyard View Room view out over the terrace

On site, we have Luxury Vineyard Lodges and Vineyard View Rooms for you to choose from, plus a Brasserie serving the best local food paired perfectly with our homegrown wines. We promise, tasting English wine here, with us, will be a wine experience you’ll never forget.


View All Gift Vouchers

Your Christmas Wine Menu – What Wines to Serve This Christmas

With Christmas encroaching, you may be starting to think about what Christmas wine to stock up on this year to keep your guests in the festive spirit. We believe that the best wine pairing really comes down to one thing: personal preference.

If you’d like to open a mature bottle you’ve been saving for a special occasion, then there really is no better time to share it with your family than Christmas. If you want to drink a white wine with your Christmas turkey, rather than the more traditional red, then that’s entirely up to you. There really is no right and wrong when it comes to enjoying Christmas wine over the festive season (at least, not in our rulebook).

The wine you serve your guests should similarly be a stress-free experience. If you’re not sure what wines they like, why not ask them before the big day rather than guessing? Of course, if you do want some expert guidance, then your local wine merchant should be able to give you some insightful wine pairing recommendations.

Naturally, we are always here to lend a helping hand when choosing the best wine for your Christmas dinner and for any other festivities you have planned – simply get in touch and we’ll be happy to help.

For now, here is the Christmas wine menu that our wine expert, Thomas, will be serving this year – to help give you some ideas.

Christmas Day Wines – Our Wine Pairing Suggestions

English Sparkling Wine Classic Cuvee n/v by Three Choirs Vineyards


Pre-dinner Drinks: Classic Cuvée

A glass of English fizz at breakfast is a great way to get Christmas Day underway. Our Classic Cuvée is a traditionally-made sparkling wine of very high quality to get you in the festive mood. Dry and subtle, with just enough bubbles and not too alcoholic, it makes a great Bucks Fizz in the morning or is excellent as an aperitif before your start your meal.

Seafood Starters: Coleridge Hill

A clean and fresh unoaked white wine that’s superb for fish dishes. Its balanced acidity cuts through the fattiness of smoked salmon, whilst its palate is loaded with hints of crisp apple, fragrant elderflower and freshly-cut grass, making it easy and enjoyable to drink. This wine is versatile enough to serve with your Christmas turkey too.


Christmas Turkey: Willowbrook or Ravens Hill

Because turkey is a white meat with a relatively low fat content, Three Choirs Vineyards Ravens Hill Red Wineideally you want a white wine that is full-bodied or a red wine that is medium bodied to accentuate the flavours and be able to handle all the extra trimmings.

Our Ravens Hill is a deep ruby-coloured red wine, full of ripe blackberry and cherry fruit perfect if you’re having sweet accompaniments with your turkey, such as buttered carrots and cranberry sauce.

Our Willowbrook is a delicious white wine that’s soft and full on the palate, with a long, rich rounded finish and subtle aromas of peach and lychee. Works nicely with bread sauce and its creaminess can help the meat if its a little on the dry side.

After dinner: Late Harvest

Whatever you are serving after dinner this year, be it a cheese board or a Christmas pudding, be sure to pair it with our exceptional dessert wine, Late Harvest. Only available from the cellar door here on our Gloucestershire vineyard, this wine is made from 100% Siegerrebe. It has a distinct fresh grapefruit aroma, followed by ripe citrus fruits on the palate with honeyed notes and a long aromatic finish.

Visit Us View All Wine

Private: Wine Tasting Tour & lunch for 2

Enjoy a relaxing day out in our beautiful Vineyards with lunch served in the Brasserie. Your gift recipients should arrive at 11.15am to start their day with us. All they need to do is book a table for lunch.*

This experience includes:

  • 45 minute guided tour at 11.30am (Wednesday, Friday, Saturday & Sunday)  or 2.00 pm (Saturday only)
  • 4 carefully selected wines to taste
  • Vineyard walk, at your leisure – Approximately 30 minutes.
  • Lunch for 2*
  • A bottle of wine to take home
  • Stay with us and use the voucher for the residents tour at 4pm and towards the cost of dinner.

We are open between 4th January to 23rd December and offer the wine tasting tour with lunch on Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays & Sundays. Please note that Saturdays are very popular and you may need to book several weeks in advance as places are limited.

*Lunch is selected from the full brasserie menu, to the value of £50.00 per couple.

This voucher is valid for 2 people.

£89.95 By Email Add To Basket


  • We’d love to send you exclusive offers and the latest info from Three Choirs by email. We’ll always treat your details with the utmost care and won’t share them with any third party. You can, of course, opt out of these communications at any time! See our Privacy Policy for more info.
View Basket