It’s back – and promises to be bigger and better than ever! This year’s Vineyard & Winery Show on 23 November will again feature great wines, unbeatable networking opportunities and a not-to-be-missed chance to catch up with what’s new in the industry.
With trade stands up by a remarkable 40% to an impressive 112, the Vineyard and Winery Show will once again reflect the heartbeat of the growing viticulture industry in the UK, as well as offering a chance to taste 100 expertly chosen wines.
The huge line up of exhibitors will again cater for the expected make-up of show visitors, with lots on offer both for established growers and those who are looking for the support they need before planting their first vines.
“At one of last year’s seminars, the speaker asked the audience how many of them had established vineyards, and half the hands in the room went up,” recalled Jamie McGrorty, publisher of Vineyard Magazine, joint organiser of the show. “Then he asked how many were thinking about entering the industry – and the rest of the audience put their hands up.
“This year’s show will build on the success of last year’s event, which was the first ever, by bringing together a broad range of experts and suppliers who can help established growers improve their product but can also provide early days advice and support for those who are just starting out.”
It may only be year two for The Vineyard and Winery Show, but the event has already established itself as the must-visit event of the year for long-term growers and those who are hoping to join them in making the most of the ideal conditions in England and Wales for growing grapes and making wines.
The 2021 event, described by Jamie as “unbelievably successful” saw the organisers run out of the special bags and tasting glasses provided to visitors within about three hours of the doors opening at 8.30am.
The seminars, with seats for 160 people, were all fully subscribed as an estimated 2,000 people attended the show, which – as this year – was organised by Vineyard magazine in association with WineGB and with the support of a generous line-up of sponsors.
Organisers are expecting this year’s event, which takes place at the Kent Event Centre, Detling, from 8.30am to 4pm, to smash last year’s attendance figure, with up to 3,000 expected to take the opportunity to hear from the experts, get the lowdown on industry innovations and chat with like-minded people.
The show will again be based around a central tasting area featuring no fewer than 100 of the country’s top wines. This year’s selection has been especially chosen to include all the grape varieties and styles available to UK growers.
“This has never been done before,” said Jamie. “The idea is that this complete cross section of styles and regions will educate and inspire producers, helping them to decide which varieties and styles to choose while at the same time benchmarking their current vintage.” The wines feature many medal winners from some of the best-known vineyards.
This year’s seminar programme, fully hosted this year by WineGB, once more offers an impressive range of speakers on a variety of relevant topics and is again likely to be ‘standing room only’ for latecomers.
“The beauty of the show is that it brings together a really good mix of people who can share ideas and provide inspiration for newcomers to the industry alongside detailed technical knowledge for those with more experience. Its success, demonstrated by last year’s attendance and the fact that this year’s trade stand allocation is already sold out, highlights the huge potential the industry has here in the UK,” said Jamie.
Another feature of the 2021 show that is returning by popular demand is Matthew Jukes’ unmissable masterclass. The world-renowned wine writer and Vineyard columnist will again be conducting a structured wine tasting starting at 1pm and priced at just £20 per person.
Spaces are limited to 120 people who will enjoy sampling six wines selected by Matthew, who will explain why he feels each one is special and deserves a space on everyone’s wine rack. The six wines chosen are 21 Kin (Kinsbrook Vineyard), 2021 Vagabond Rosé (Yew Tree Vineyard), 2021 Penny Red (Halfpenny Green Wine Estate), 2015 Cuvée Boz (Sugrue South Downs), 2014 Blanc de Noirs (Wiston) and 2018 Blanc de Noirs (Gusbourne).
Matthew, who regularly lectures, judges, speaks at wine conferences and runs masterclass tastings for both corporate and private clients all over the world, is looking forward to this year’s show. “I absolutely love meeting winemakers and growers at The Vineyard & Winery Show” he said. “Last year’s event was an overwhelming success; it felt like the whole industry was there. I’m glad to be part of it again.”
Main sponsors for this year’s Show are Berlin Packaging, Hutchinsons, Royston Labels, Vitifruit Equipment, and new for this year Core Equipment.
Other businesses supporting individual events include seminar sponsors Ferovinum, gift bag suppliers Rankin Bros, wine glass providers Urban Bar and Rainbow Professional, sponsors of Matthew Jukes’ masterclass. Free coffee will be on offer throughout the day courtesy of OnePay and AG Recruitment.
This year will see the introduction of trade stand awards, with the winners receiving wines presented in a special six-bottle wine box created to promote the show by cardboard packaging experts W H Skinner.
Also new for this year is an after-show dinner jointly organised by Vineyard Magazine and WineGB. The Great British Wine Festival will give visitors and exhibitors a chance to catch up and relax after a busy show day. Tickets cost £75 +VAT, with tables of 10 available. The evening will feature live music, a three-course dinner and, of course, excellent UK wine. Tickets can be booked at www.tinyurl.com/VineyardShowDinner For more information contact Angelina at WineGB on 01858 467792 or email