Saturday 13th July saw the opening of Toppesfield Vineyard’s spectacular new Wine Centre. Founders, Jane and Peter Moore are delighted to see their vision for a stylish, contemporary space come to reality after 18 months of hard work by their builder, Derek Mason Limited.
The boutique vineyard focuses on delivering a high quality product (they have won numerous awards for their Bacchus and Rosé wines) which can now be served in a luxurious contemporary environment. One of the key features of their new centre is a large picture window overlooking the beautiful vineyard in which they grow their Bacchus and Pinot Noir vines.
The Wine Centre was officially opened by Duncan McNeill, one of the UK’s leading viticulturists. Jane and Peter give him full credit for their success: “Duncan gave us invaluable advice in the first few years of establishing Toppesfield Vineyard – he provided the technical consultancy which we applied on site – enabling us to do everything right from Day One”.
Duncan is equally delighted with Toppesfield’s success. He says, “It’s nice to think that I have been able to help with the establishment of Toppesfield Vineyard, but it is the work that Jane and Peter have both put into the whole project that gives it the integrity and character that it possesses. The wine centre itself is just pure class. They really have contributed to English wine culture. It is a showpiece for English boutique wine”.
Duncan led two heavily subscribed tours of the vineyard after the opening ceremony. There was huge interest and lots of questions as people were fascinated by the number of factors which need to be taken into consideration for growing vines.
Mary Mudd, International Wine Judge, provided attendees at the Opening Event with a tutored wine tasting experience. She is one of the pioneers of the English Wine Industry. Having planted Dedham Vale Vineyard in 1990, her knowledge of growing grapes, making and tasting wines is extensive. Her audience at Toppesfield comprised a number of wine connoisseurs and wine buyers as well as general members of the public. In addition to tutored tastings of the Toppesfield wines, she also ran a blind ‘smell test’ of 4 different alcoholic beverages which proved much more difficult than most participants anticipated!
Jane Moore comments, “We are delighted that so many of our local community came to support and enjoy the day, as well as many of our clients, who attended on what would normally be their day off from the wine business! It was a great turnout and we hope all who came will spread the word about the quality and success of English wines. Our aim has always been to deliver a top quality experience; the new Wine Centre provides us with the environment for clients to drink our wines in a beautiful, contemporary space – in full view of the vineyard where our grapes are grown….”
Toppesfield Vineyard is a boutique vineyard founded and run by Jane and Peter Moore. Their story started in 2012 when they had the opportunity to buy some agricultural land next to their house. They already knew from previous research that the valley around Toppesfield was heavily planted with vines in Roman Times. This theory was supported by the discovery in the 1800s of the remains of a Roman centurion; his sword blade, metal wine vase and small cups were discovered in the field where the current vineyard is situated. This history gave them the inspiration to create a 21st century vineyard in April 2012 in the rolling hills around Toppesfield.
They chose Bacchus as their main white grape variety; as a ‘cool climate’ grape, it has proven to be very successful in East Anglia’s dry and sunny climate. Pinot Noir Fruhburgunder, an early ripening red grape, is the foundation for their award winning Rosé wine. Since it’s creation, the vineyard has gone from strength to strength, winning numerous awards for each of their wines.