Mulbarton vineyard scoops award for first wine

Humbleyard Vineyard in Mulbarton has won an award for their first ever wine. The vineyard was plante

Humbleyard Vineyard in Mulbarton has won an award for their first ever wine. The vineyard was planted in 2010 and their newly launched rose has won a bronze award at the East Anglian Vineyard's Association awards, their white wine was highly commended.Vineyard manager Oliver Berney and owner Rob Preston (check shirt). - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2013

A Mulbarton-based vineyard is celebrating after its first wine scooped an award.

Humbleyard Vineyard won The Cants Rose Trophy for the best rosé wine at the annual East Anglian Vineyards' Association awards.

Owned by Rob Preston, the vineyard, which is attached to Paddock Farm, was planted in 2010.

Oli Berney, one of the managers at the vineyard, said: 'We planted 50pc of the vineyard in 2010 and then a further 25pc in 2011 and 2012.

'It's the first wine we have made and it's great to have some recognition that we are doing something right during such a difficult year.

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'Everything is a couple of weeks late this year because of the cold winter.

'To be able to produce good grapes during bad years shows good husbandry.'

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The vineyard's white wine was also highly commended at the ceremony.

'We are part of the working farm. Nobody is solely dedicated to the vineyard, but there are two members of staff who work full time and two who work for six months of the year,' he said.

'Vineyards and fruit farms are very labour intensive – there are only about two months of the year when you are not active. It's a process of pruning the vines and training them. We have to put some good spraying regime in place to control the fruit.

'We harvest the grapes and they are made into wine at Shawsgate Winery in Framlingham.

'We chose to use them because they had won a number of awards. Our sparkling wines are made down on the south coast.'

As part of their prize, they will be given a rose from Cants of Colchester.

'It's an award which will stay with us forever,' Mr Berney said. 'We are going to get a climbing rose which will stand in front of the farm shop.'

EAVA committee chairman Guy Howard said: 'For such a challenging growing year it was a wonderful surprise to see so many excellent wines put forward into the competition and simply serves to reinforce our belief that East Anglia's climate and geography are particularly well suited to viticulture.

'Congratulations to our trophy winners, in particular the newcomers. We hope to see even more newly planted vineyards entering the competition next year.'

The wine will be available to buy from early August.

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