Combe Hay Vineyard – Site, History and Grape Varieties
What makes our vineyard and wine so special really is all about where it is – the flavour of the grapes and wine is drawn from its surroundings – you are drinking a bit of the beautiful English countryside!
It’s situated on a gentle, south facing slope, sheltered by woodland, fed by spring water and surrounded by fields in an area of “Outstanding Natural Beauty” on the outskirts of Bath.
Varieties – The three German vine varieties of –
Schonberger – with a pretty pink tinge when ripe this adds fruit and citrus flavours to the wine,
Muller-Thurgau – popular in Italy, it adds clean mineral elements, and
Huxelrebe – which blends really well with the other two varieties to add smoothness on the palate and length,
were chosen by my father, a wine merchant who, using his experience, wanted to make wine people really enjoyed drinking.
Terroir (the site) – The aspect, climate, site and soil are also crucial considerations. This is what the French call “terroir” and its important because our vine varieties in particular will produce grapes of different flavours on different sites. That is why Combe Hay will always be special, even a wine made from the same varieties will not be identical, as so much flavour comes from the stunning fresh English countryside.
History – Planted in 1986, and always family run, its well established for an English Vineyard, as many have only been planted in the last few years. The vines have had time to reach their roots down and reflect the area they are grown in. The area itself however also has an ancient tradition of wine making, with mentions in the Domesday book and sites where the Romans may have planted vines, we are not the first to realise what a great place it is for a vineyard.
Combe Hay – Dry White Wine – Description
We hope the description gives a helpful idea, but wine is a natural product, it changes slightly every year, please try it – you might taste something different, if so we would love to hear about it.
Nose – A clean elegant aromatic wine with a fresh, clean, zesty nose evoking floral; elderflower, apple blossom and heather notes, as well as a hint of the sweetness of ripe figs.
Taste – The palate is floral and fresh, with elements of fruit and mineral undertones from the Muller-Thurgau.
What’s it like? – The wine has Sauvignon Blanc characteristics; flowery and clean, but with more smooth fruitiness and without the gooseberry edge of a Sauvignon. The qualities of the grape varieties also lead to comparisons with a top quality Chennin Blanc.
We would love to know what you think, please email or contact us through Instagram.