Tamara Roberts, CEO of Ridgeview Wine Estate, was awarded Sussex Business Woman of the Year at Friday night’s ceremony for the Business Women Excellence Awards. The winery also won overall Sussex Business of the Year at the black tie gala dinner at the Hilton Metrolpole in Brighton. The awards are designed to celebrate and recognise the success of today’s very best females in business in Southern England.
Second generation CEO Roberts said of her award: “To be named Sussex Business Woman of the Year was such a lovely surprise, totally unexpected. I was extremely flattered to be nominated by my peers, many of whom are worthy of recognition in their own fields of excellence. To then go on and win the overall Sussex Business and Business Woman of the year was fantastic, recognising the determination and passion we have put into the growth of Ridgeview. Some big thanks go to the support of our wonderful team and to my parents who had the courage to begin this inspiring business at a time when English sparkling wine was relatively unheard of.”
Tamara Roberts took over as CEO of her family business in 2014 and has overseen Ridgeview’s growth of production to nearly 300,000 bottles per annum with plans to double production incrementally over the next 5 years. Tamara is actively involved within the local business community and is on the board of English Wine Producers. She is regularly asked to speak about her experience and the success of Ridgeview at business events. The Wine and Spirit Trade Association earlier in the year held a Parliamentary reception to celebrate ‘Women in Wine’ and this new accolade cements the importance of women who represent 43% of the Wine and Spirits Industry.
Ridgeview are the proud winners of numerous international sparkling wine trophies and their wine is served regularly at Buckingham Palace and the official sparkling wine of No. 10 Downing Street. Leading the way in export of English sparkling wine, Ridgeview can now be found in 12 countries around the world.
Ridgeview is a family company dedicated solely to the production of the highest quality, traditional method sparkling wine from classic Champagne varieties and methods. They celebrated their 20th anniversary in 2015.
In just 15 years of sales Ridgeview has won over 250 medals and 27 trophies in International and National Competitions (awarded English Wine of the Year in 2000, 2002, 2009 & 2010).
In 2010 they were awarded the ultimate accolade for the trophy for best sparkling wine in the world in Decanter World Wine Awards, the only time this trophy has been awarded to a wine outside Champagne.
Their sparkling wine has also been served by Her Majesty at state banquets at Buckingham Palace and for the official Queens Diamond Jubilee celebrations including in 2015 at the State Banquet for the Chinese President at Buckingham Palace.
Ridgeview wines were chosen by Hugh Johnson and Jancis Robinson to launch their latest edition of the World Encyclopaedia of Wine in New York.
Founder Mike Roberts (1943-2014) was chair of the English Wine Producers and was awarded an MBE for his services to English wine in 2011.
The second generation of the Roberts family, their daughter Tamara and son Simon, have lead roles in the management and winemaking and continue to develop Ridgeview as a pioneer within the wine industry.
Ridgeview wines are sold in the finest restaurants and speciality retailers throughout the United Kingdom.
Ridgeview export reseller portfolio is rapidly expanding; the wines are sold in 12 countries worldwide including USA, Holland, Japan, Australia and Finland. They currently export 20% of their production & aim to take this further alongside their expansion to increase production to 500,000 bottles by 2020.
February 2015 saw Ridgeview Wine Estate awarded one of DEFRA’s Top 50 Food Stars. 50 Food and Drink Stars was set up in response to the revival of food and drink industries in the UK, and to recognise food and drink entrepreneurs for their contribution to the UK’s economy.
Ridgeview wines were served in the English pavilion, at World Expo in Milan from May to September 2015.
Ridgeview won the Small Business Award of the year at the 2015 Sussex Business Awards, swiftly followed by the Sussex Drink Producer of the Year at the 10th Sussex Food and Drinks Awards, in January 2016.
In 2016 Ridgeview was named Best London and South East Business Family Business of the Year and Best Food and Drink Family Business of the Year in the Family Business United Awards
The official sparkling wine for all No. 10 Downing Street receptions is Ridgeview Bloomsbury.
It was announced yesterday that Ridgeview have been chosen as the official suppliers for Downing Street receptions, confirming the Government’s commitment to supporting the growth and success of the burgeoning British food and drink industry.
Ridgeview’s Grosvenor Blanc de Blancs 2009 was served last night at the state banquet held by Her Majesty The Queen at Buckingham Palace as part of the current state visit by Chinese Premier Xi Jinping.
Guests including the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, PM David Cameron and Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn joined the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh, Jinping and his wife. They were served Ridgeview’s Grosvenor 2009 Brut as an aperitif before dinner which included fillet of West Coast turbot and loin of Balmoral venison in a Madeira and truffle sauce.
Tamara Roberts, CEO said of the news; “We’re thrilled that our Grosvenor 2009 was served on such a prestigious occasion and are honoured that it has now been enjoyed at three state banquets including being served to President Obama. This is testament to the British royal family’s support and belief in the quality of English sparkling wine on an international stage.”
From The Guardian: “… nurturers of Britain’s nascent wine industry with an eye on an emerging markets, where appreciation of wine is a status symbol, might hope that senior communist party palettes will haves been ticklet by the Ridgeview Grosvenor 2009, a sparkling English wine…”
We’re pleased to announce that Robin Langton, former Laithwaites Buyer and Winemaker, will be joining us as Chief Operating Officer.
Our CEO Tamara Roberts explains the decision to appoint Robin, who brings with him 15 years experience as a winemaker in the US, New Zealand and France, coupled with commercial skills gained during his most recent role as a senior buyer for Laithwaites.
“We want to go to the next step but there is a limit to what you can do. We’re a small family unit, so it was natural to bring in expertise to help us get to that next level”
Ridgeview wines were served to a society of the world’s most prestigious chefs at a special event at the Royal Automobile Club in London.
The Club des Chefs des Chefs meets annually to promote each nation’s major culinary traditions. The members are a select group of the current personal chefs of each country’s head of state and include Her Majesty the Queen’s Chef Mark Flanagan and Chef to the US President, Cristeta Comerford. Each year a different country is selected to host the event and in 2014 England was awarded the honour.
The Chefs des Chefs have in the past have been received at The White House, Le Palais de Elysée and in Monaco.
At the Royal Automobile Club reception members enjoyed Ridgeview Knightsbridge (Blanc de Noir) 2010 and Ridgeview Victoria Rosé 2009 with canapés from around the world suggested by the chefs.
Mardi Roberts and Tom Surgey from Ridgeview had the opportunity to chat with Chef des Chef members whilst sampling rare, archived selections of our wines including a magnum of the Blanc de Blancs 2000 and the Decanter World Wine Awards Winner of Best Sparkling Wine 2010, Ridgeview Grosvenor 2006.
Other English food producers chosen to take part in the event are both Royal Warrant Holders; Paxton and Whitfield who have been producing cheese since 1797 and Donald Russell Butchers who supply meat to many award winning Michelin-starred restaurants.
The Royal Automobile Club is a prestigious private members club in London’s Pall Mall. Founded in 1897, it is one of the world’s oldest and most highly respected motoring clubs.
The event was aimed at supporting the national charity Chefs Adopt A School which promotes the education and appreciation of food to children. Further information on Chefs Adopt A School can be found on chefsadoptaschool.org.uk
Ridgeview were very honoured to be included in this event and this was an excellent opportunity to highlight the exciting global growth and opportunities for English sparkling wine around the world.
Ridgeview Wine Estate is absolutely delighted to have been recognised as one of the 50 most entrepreneurial companies at the government’s 50 Food and Drink Stars awards.
50 Food and Drink Stars was set up in response to the revival of food and drink industries in the UK, and to recognise food and drink entrepreneurs for their contribution to the UK’s economy. The initiative has been launched to help the winners grow their businesses and get more of their produce on supermarket shelves and dinner tables in the UK and across the world.
Joining a host of amazing businesses, Tamara and Simon Roberts, CEO and Winemaker of Ridgeview, represented the business at Downing Street on Thursday 26th February 2015.
This year marks Ridgeview’s 20th Anniversary and in that time we have helped prove to the world that English sparkling wines can compete with the very best. We now export our award winning sparkling wines to fourteen countries and we are looking forward to continuing this success as we double our production over the next five years.
As a business we are very proud to have been included in DEFRA’s Top 50 Food Stars list as a reward for our pioneering work in the English sparkling wine industry.
Read Suzy Atkins article on British wine which recently featured in The Telegraph. Our Ridgeview Bloomsbury 2011 was very well received. Click on the following link to read more telegraph.co.uk/foodanddrink/wine
Explore two of Sussex’s finest vineyards on board the Sussex Wine Bus Tour, launching as part of English Wine Week 2014, Saturday 24th May, and running every fourth Saturday of the month until September 2014.
Hop aboard either the luxury coach or vintage Routemaster bus from Old Steine gardens in Brighton and be whisked to the award-winning Ridgeview Wine Estate at Ditchling for a vineyard and winery tour discovering why the South Downs are a world-class growing region for sparkling wine grapes.
Lunch will be taken amongst the vines courtesy of Brighton’s supper club queen Cantina, followed by a cheese tasting with David Deaves of La Cave á Fromage and a fun wine quiz with prizes to test your knowledge of English wines.
In the afternoon, the bus departs for Bolney Wine Estate where there will be a further tour of the vineyard and a closer look into still wine production, before a tasting of Bolney’s wide range of internationally acclaimed still and sparkling wines.
The wine bus tours are run by the Brighton & Hove Food and Drink Festival, one of the UK’s largest food and drink events running two major festival periods every April and September, and a host of consumer and business-to-business events across the year.
“The Sussex Gourmet Wine Bus Tour is a fantastic opportunity to visit a number of award winning local wineries with the added fun of wine tasting”, says Mardi Roberts of Ridgeview Wine Estate. “Visitors will be given an insight into the care and effort taken in our vineyards followed by an extensive tour of all the facilities of wine production including our underground cellars.”
Each of the tours finish back in Brighton for a complimentary cocktail at Be At One – the latest addition to the city’s burgeoning cocktail bar scene. With over 120 cocktails on their list, you’re sure to find the perfect seaside sundowner.
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