The U.K. Is Producing More Wine Than Ever Before—Here Are The Ones to Try
Bring on the bubbly.
We hypothesized in 2017 that the U.K. was about to have a wine boom—they planted a record-breaking amount of vines during the year, spanning 625 acres, as previously reported by Food & Wine. At the time, it was predicted that the new plantings would help the U.K. produce about 2 million more bottles of wine each year. This week, however, it was announced that the wine boom has far, far exceed expectations. In 2018, England and Wales produced a staggering 15.6 million bottles of wine—breaking the old record of 6.3 million bottles by 9.3 million, reports The Drinks Business. Exports were also up in 2018, jumping from 27 to 40 total countries.
“I do not think it would be unreasonable to say that 2018 will probably go down as the year when the industry came of age for our colleagues in the wine trade both here in the U.K. and overseas,” Simon Robinson, chairman of Wines of Great Britain (who provided the statistics), told The Drinks Business.
So what does this mean for us stateside? Two words: sparkling wine. The U.K. is best known for producing sparkling wines, and southern England has particularly mastered the craft—so well, the wines can rival Champagne. So if you’re in the market for a new bottle, consider trying one from across the pond (and with this boom, expect more options to be on the way soon). For recommendations, Ray Isle, our senior wine editor, highlighted a few picks in a previous story that are already available in the U.S. for purchase. Looking for something crisp? Try out the 2013 Bolney Wine Estate Blanc de Blancs. In the mood for rosé? Your best bet is the 2013 Hush Heath Balfour Brut Rosé, which was designed to be on par with Champagne. To find more wine inspiration, check out the full story.
However, the U.K. might have some sparkling wine competition in Spain, whose Cava producers just launched a new label today—Corpinnat. And on the opposite spectrum of wine news, Pringles cans—yes, Pringles cans—are now available as wine tumblers, thanks to an Etsy user called "The Cup Artist." They're currently sold out at the moment—but if you're curious, you can read more about them here.