A selection of guests from local Cheshire businesses including We Love Cheshire, So Cheshire and Marketing Cheshire were invited to gain a hands-on experience at the three-acre Cheshire vineyard and joined the 12 strong Estates team who pick the grapes each year.
As part of the experience Peter Pattenden, Carden Park estates manager explained “Traditionally the grapes have been picked in October, however for the last two years we have made the decision to delay the harvest until November when the grapes have been given the opportunity to produce the best possible sugar levels.
“This year in particular has provided the optimal growing conditions with the Summer months providing plenty of sunshine to grow high quality grapes and a bumper crop”
In total over nine tonnes of grapes were picked during the two day harvest which were then taken to Half Penny vineyard in Staffordshire to start the fermentation process called “methode champagnois”. The grapes were pressed resulting in 6,300 litres of juice which will produce approximately 8,000 bottles of Carden Old Gold sparkling wine and Carden Old Gold rose sparkling wine.
Earlier this year the team at Carden Park Hotel celebrated as the Carden Old Gold rose won a silver award in the Mercian Vineyard Association awards.
Hamish Ferguson, Carden Park general manager said “We are thrilled with the result of this year’s harvest, it is the highest tonnage of grapes since the vineyard was resurrected by Peter and his team in 2006. The fact that this year we were also able to welcome guests to help has made the harvest one to remember”
Guests who helped with the harvest were invited to enjoy the fruits of their labour with a glass of the Carden Old Gold sparkling wine following their morning in the vineyard.
Nicola Said of Marketing Cheshire who joined the harvest said ‘It was such as privilege to join the harvest and certainly an eye-opener into the work involved in making just one bottle of Carden Old Gold sparkling wine. To have been involved in the biggest harvest to date is fantastic news. This is such a unique attraction in Cheshire and certainly worth a visit’
This year’s harvest also made the national news with a team from Granada Reports filming the guests during the day for a feature piece that was later aired on ITV.
A bottle of Carden Old Gold sparkling wine makes the ideal Christmas gift for anyone who loves Cheshire produce. Bottles are available to buy onsite at the hotel or from the Wolverhampton Wanderers Football Club.
The onsite vineyard sits within the 1000 acre Cheshire resort of Carden Park. In addition to visiting the vineyard visitors can experience the award winning spa, championship golf, Rosette awarded dining and onsite activities at Carden Park Hotel.