It’s no secret that two of my favourite things in the world are wine and cake. So imagine my excitement when I was invited to afternoon tea on a Vineyard?
I was a very happy lady indeed.
The vineyard in question is Holmfirth Vineyard. Yes….I did just say Holmfirth…as in Yorkshire!
A cold, west-facing, exposed hill-side in Yorkshire doesn’t seem like the most obvious place to build a vineyard so I was pretty curious to see how on earth the owners had achieved such a mean feat!
Set in seven acres overlooking the Holme Valley, the views from the vineyard are pretty spectacular.
The tour itself is led by the master wine maker Luke, who provides an entertaining introduction into the origins of the vineyard, its unique hybrid vines and its entreprenurial owners.
Luke explained how owners Rebecca (a former Formula One racing car safety engineer) and Ian (a former furniture designer) had moved up to Yorkshire from the Midlands in 2007 where Rebecca grew up.
They bought an old sheep farm, renovated the old farm-house as their home and began work on growing vines with the help of a clever man from Luxembourg and a team of friends and family.
Their idea was initially met with criticism and disdain by the local community however slowly but surely, the specially designed hybrid vines (chosen for their ability to grow in Northern latitudes) began to grow.
Today the vineyard produces four wines; a white, red, rose and a sparkling wine.
After hearing about the history of the vineyard we were led into the small winery where the wine is produced. Luke described the wine making process in interesting and humorous detail, from fermentation right through to bottling.
We sampled all four of the wines at the end of the tour (much to my delight). The wine is unlike many of the wines we might normally enjoy from the supermarket but rather nice, non the less. The sparkling wine was probably my favourite…I love a glass of fizz!
After the tour we were ushered though to the gorgeous restaurant for afternoon tea. It was nice to come in from the cold to a nice pot of tea and tiered tray of sandwiches, scones and cakes….my idea of heaven of course.
The food was delicious and the restaurant itself boasts an impressive menu serving breakfast from 9am to 11.30am, lunch from 12pm and afternoon tea from 2pm.
They offer a selection of packages enabling visitors to compliment their tour with a meal in the restaurant which I would highly recommend.
If you enjoyed the wine then you can take a bottle home with you as the wines are all available to purchase in the cafe shop too.
Tours run twice a day at 10.30am and 3pm and if you are inclined to do far more wine ‘drinking’ than just ‘tasting’, there is even overnight accommodation available in the way of self catering holiday apartments on site.
If you’re a wine lover, the vineyard tour is a great day out. The staff are friendly, the customer service is excellent and the food delicious.
(This review is based on my own opinions, no payment or services were exchanged.)