Ridgeview partner with Polar Explorer Ben Saunders

(Ben Saunders – Photo credit – Canada Goose)

Ridgeview has teamed up with the inspirational Polar explorer Ben Saunders as a supporter and official wine partner. Ben is currently attempting the first ever solo, unassisted and unsupported crossing of Antarctica. As one of the world’s leading polar explorers, Ben has covered more than 6,000 kms on foot in the Polar regions since 2001. This latest expedition was first attempted by Ben’s friend Lt Col Henry Worsley who nearly completed the journey before falling ill and passing away in January 2016. Ben is determined to finish the expedition in Henry’s honour while raising money for the Endeavour fund.

After a chance meeting at Ridgeview with Ben Saunders, both parties got together to swap values and ideas. Together they instantly found a synergy between Ben’s ground-breaking, brave spirit and Ridgeview’s pioneering, bold efforts in establishing an English sparkling brand when it was unheard of as a product in the global world of wine.

Ben commented on the partnership from his tent in Antarctica: “The ability to celebrate – as well as to endure – is a vital part of any human endeavor. I’m proud to be partnering with Ridgeview, and a glass of their world-class sparkling wine is the perfect way to toast the completion (and indeed the launch) of an expedition. As a British, family-run company, Ridgeview have been unafraid to take on steep odds, giant competitors and lofty goals, and the wine they produce is testament to their passion and attention to detail. I’m delighted to be working with them”.

Ridgeview will be supporting Ben and following his inspirational journey. Tamara Roberts CEO of Ridgeview commented; “We were so inspired by Ben who is incredibly brave, determined and uncompromising with such an infectious spirit. We felt a great alignment with Ben’s values and not being afraid to be different. Ben’s latest journey in honour of his friend Lt Henry Worsley is so honourable and an inspiration to us all. We are looking forward to toasting a glass of Ridgeview with Ben on his return.”

Ben is one of the world’s leading polar explorers who has covered more than 6,000 kms on foot in the Polar regions since 2001. Ben completed the Scott Expedition that defeated Captain Scott and Ernest Shackleton in 2014 and holds the record for the longest solo Artic journey by a Briton. In this latest expedition Ben will be covering over 1000 miles which is expected to take around 65 days to reach his destination in the New Year.

Ridgeview will be closely following the journey of Ben Saunders and this admirable journey on his blog http://bensaunders.com/ You can also sponsor Ben and the Endeavour Fund directly at  http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/polarben

Vineyard Manager Matthew Strugnell reflects on 2017 growing season

2017 Harvest could be defined as a season of two halves: pre and post fruit set.

An early bud burst makes the viticulturist nervous.  The widely reported Spring frosts were indeed severe, and in some parts of the country, too severe for any of the usual frost protection methods.  At Ridgeview we were able to reduce any damage to the bare minimum using bougies.

May and June were both warm and sunny which led to very early flowering. We normally say that flowering occurs at some point during Wimbledon; this year we were in full flower in time for the French Open final.  Mid way through flowering, I calculated that we could well be harvesting on September 25th, a full 5 days earlier than we had ever picked before and only the second September harvest we have done.

The weather remained superb until the berries were petit pois size.  Late July, although the temperatures were still reasonable, we had well above average rainfall.  This continued throughout August, so berry growth was very rapid.  This had the potential to cause early botrytis, so canopy management and well timed sprays were crucial.

Veraison was early and fairly quick,  so my early prediction of Sept 25th held true.  The ripening period continued to be wet, so we selectively removed some fruit in the heaviest cropping areas.  We kept leaf removal to a minimum to give some aeration to the bunches, but to maximise photosynthesis.

Some bunch weights were very impressive.  Chardonnay was particularly good; high level of cropping (13,000kg / ha), well ripened and free of disease.  Pinot noir, the yields were lower but really flavoursome. Meunièr had some really huge ripe bunches, but fewer in number.

All in all a challenging year, but we got very good yields of ripe, lovely clean flavoursome fruit, and as a Vineyard Manager I couldn’t ask for much more than that!

Matthew Strugnell

Vineyard Manager

Ridgeview named Viticulture Grower of the Year

Ridgeview has been proclaimed as Viticulture Grower of the Year in Horticulture Week’s Annual Grower of the Year Awards. Hosted at the Grand Connaught Rooms in London, the awards gathered over 500 professionals to celebrate the very best of UK production horticulture. As proof of how far the English wine industry has progressed Grower of the Year Awards introduced a category for Viticulture for the first time in 2017. There are now over 500 vineyards in the UK producing over 5 million bottles per year and the land under vine in England in 2017 is set to increase by 18%.

Ridgeview have been pioneering in English sparkling viticulture since their foundation in 1995. Established by Mike and Chris Roberts they were one of the first to identify the potential of Southern England as a world class sparkling wine producing region. The viticultural map of the UK has changed dramatically in Ridgeview’s life time. Cool climate wine production is challenging and Ridgeview have learnt to adapt processes and techniques to reflect this. From the onset, Ridgeview have been committed to sustainable practices in viticulture and are widely regarded for their dedication to quality and innovation.

Ridgeview’s Viticulture Grower of the Year award was accepted by Vineyard Manager Matt Strugnell, who has managed Ridgeview’s home estate and has assisted many of their partnership vineyards for over 15 years. Matt has been instrumental in the care and attention to detail of the vineyard and passionate about the production of the very best grapes possible.

Quote from Matt: ‘This was the first time that viticulture has been recognised by an award in the UK, and to be the recipient was a real honour and something of which I am very proud. Managing one of the leading vineyards in the English sparkling wine revival has its challenges but has been so rewarding. This award is a great acknowledgment of Ridgeview’s innovation and progression in the last 20 years. ‘

Ridgeview now export 20% of production to 13 countries around the world and their sparkling wines have been used on many prestigious occasions including served by the Queen to President Obama and the Chinese State President. This success could not have happened without the raw material of grapes being of the highest quality and Ridgeview are thrilled for this to be acknowledged by Grower of the Year Awards.

Media requests, images and interviews can be arranged by contacting Astrid Lewis on 07598269842 (astrid@spritzmarketing.co.uk), Elizabeth Cook (elizabeth@spritzmarketing.co.uk) or Mardi Roberts (mardi@ridgeview.co.uk).

Matt Strugnell – Ridgeview Vineyard Manager, Luke Spalding – Ridgeview Vineyard Assistant accepting

‘Viticulture Grower of the Year Award’ from compare Jo Caulfield at the Horticulture Week Grower of the Year Awards

 Notes for editors:  Ridgeview Wine Estate:

  • 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 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 the World Encyclopaedia of Wine in New York.
  • Founder Mike Roberts (1943-2014) chaired English Wine Producers and awarded an MBE in 2011 for his services to English
  • 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 won the Small Business Award of the year at the 2015 Sussex Business Awards, in 2016 Ridgeview was named Best London and South East Business 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.
  • Ridgeview’s CEO Tamara Roberts named Sussex Business Woman of the Year ‘Business Women in Excellence Awards 2016’
  • Ridgeview winemaking team are behind the production of Great Windsor Park Sparkling wine, managed by Laithwaites within Her Majesty’s Windsor Estate

CEO of Ridgeview Tamara Roberts named Sussex Business Woman of the Year

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.

More information on these awards can be found at: http://businesswomenexcellenceawards.co.uk/

Media requests, images and interviews can be arranged by contacting Astrid Lewis on 07598269842 (astrid@spritzmarketing.co.uk), Elizabeth Cook (elizabeth@spritzmarketing.co.uk) or Mardi Roberts (mardi@ridgeview.co.uk). For US distribution enquiries please contact silvia@ridgeview.co.uk

Notes for editors:  Ridgeview Wine Estate:

  • 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.

The Queen serves Ridgeview to Chinese Premier

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…”

To read The Guardian’s full article click here.

Other related articles:

www.telegraph.co.uk

www.mirror.co.uk

www.decanter.com