From Chichester to Rye and inland across glorious countryside, the vineyards of Sussex produce a range of quintessentially English sparkling wine of the highest quality. There's still wine and vermouth, too.
Sussex is now widely regarded as producing some of the best sparkling wine in the world. With wine producers in Sussex, having already won ‘Best Sparkling Wine’ in many international wine competitions.
Sussex is one of the oldest and largest counties in England. It was divided into two districts (West and East) in 1832, and today Sussex has the largest cluster of vineyards in the UK with over 700ha planted and over thirty wine producers.
Sussex vineyards are based on a diverse range of soil types, including the iconic chalk of the South Downs. This major geological feature that runs through East and West Sussex has a significant calcareous influence on Sussex vineyards, providing ideal free draining soils for viticulture.
Sussex benefits from its high latitude, which gives the opportunity to have a longer growing season, enabling grapes to mature to full ripeness, and the wide diurnal temperature range providing ideal growing conditions for Traditional Method quality sparkling and still wine production.
Sussex is also recognised as one of the sunniest and warmest areas in England, classified as having a ‘maritime climate’, with average rainfall typically between 600-850mm per annum.
These inherent natural factors make Sussex an ideal region to produce grapes of outstanding quality for wine and determine the specific quality and characteristics of the wine produced.