Davenport Vineyards, Castle Hill, Rotherfield, East Sussex TN6 3RR

United Kingdom

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© 2017 by Davenport Vineyards

Making English wines since 1991

- Winemaking -

Our winery combines traditional techniques with the latest modern equipment. There are oak barrels next to stainless steel vats, a modern pneumatic press and a small basket press. It is equipped to be extremely versatile and offer a huge range of winemaking choice. Will Davenport is a Chemistry graduate and has a degree in winemaking. He prefers to use natural methods where ever possible, letting the wine settle rather than filtering, using the natural yeast from the vineyard in preference to the shop-bought version and completely avoiding fining agents. This is only possible because the starting point is one of scientific knowledge and winemaking and tasting experience built up over time since 1986.

The production methods for each wine are very different, and each is briefly outlined in the info page for each wine on our Wine Shop page. Making white, red and sparkling wines, the winery has to be multi-purpose and flexible. Each grape variety is treated differently from the moment it is harvested, with pressing techniques designed to gain the characters of the grape without some of the less desirable features. Some varieties are left on skins before pressing and some are fermented in either old oak barriques or large oak foudres. Most of the ferments are allowed to complete at ambient temperatures, without artificial cooling or heating.

The principle of winemaking at Davenport Vineyard is to allow nature to take its course under the guidance of the winemaker, and not for the winemaker to make the wines!