A Day in ‘Provence’ – at Denbies Wine Estate in heart of the UK Surrey Hills
By Ashley Gibbins
Denbies Wine Estate, England’s largest vineyard and Mayfield Lavender, organic lavender growers in the North Surrey Downs, are offering a unique day out in the Surrey Hills. Visitors will be forgiven for thinking they are in the heart of the Provence region of France, which is renowned for its’ rosé wines and vast fields of lavender. Denbies, established in 1986 with 265 acres planted under vine is internationally renowned for its’ rosé wine.
Denbies Chalk Ridge Rose won the gold award for Best Rosé in the World at the 2011International Wine Challenge. The lavender harvest window is brief and intense, lasting from the beginning of June to the end of August. The days programme A Day in ‘Provence’ in the heart of the Surrey Hills will begin at Mayfield Organic with an introduction by the owner of this beautiful organic lavender farm. Visitors will be taken through the challenges of modern day lavender growing and provide a guided tour of the fields.
The journey between the two venues is approximately 30 minutes. The Denbies Classic Winery Tour & Tasting commences in its 360° circular cinema where guests learn about the geology and history of the estate and the production process from vine to bottle. The indoor people mover then transports visitors through the working winery. The tour concludes in the cellar where Denbies wine expert will host a tasting of three wines, including Denbies award winning Rosé.
Kelly Walsh, Denbies Wine Estate Events Manager said : “We are delighted to be offering this new tour because the synergy and ‘romantic qualities’ of the two businesses is perfect and really does offer visitors a day of ‘escapism.’ A Day in ‘ Provence’ in the heart of the Surrey Hills will provide a fascinating and highly enjoyable day out. Refreshments are available at both destinations and lunch options can be arranged at Denbies Wine Estate in advance”.
The cost for A Day in ‘Provence’ in the heart of the Surrey Hills is £15.00 per person based on a minimum of 10 guests and subject to availability. Tours are available from June until the end August and last for approximately 50 minutes each. For the Lavender Outdoor tour wellington boots and umbrellas are recommended in case of inclement weather. Mayfield Lavender is located in Carshalton / Banstead, Surrey, which is less than 15 miles from central London.
The journey time from Mayfield Lavender to Denbies Wine Estate is approximately 30 minutes About Denbies Wine Estate Denbies Wine Estate is England’s largest vineyard and one of the largest privately owned in Northern Europe. The current owners acquired the then pig farm in 1985 but found that the estate had exactly the same soil composition as in the champagne region in France and revealed that the Dorking area had a history of wine making dating back to Roman times. This led to the planting of 300,000 vines over 265 acres. Denbies Wine Estate is also one of the first wine estates in the world to give visitors an insight into all aspects of the wine producing process, all year round.
Accommodation: The Denbies Farmhouse B&B, which enjoys English Tourist Board ‘4 Stars silver’ status, is located in the heart of the vineyard.