Seven years ago Robert Francis, wine lover, connoisseur and – of course – Star Castle owner, embarked on a life-long dream to produce his own fine wines. With the help and guidance of the one of the world’s foremost wine producers, Willi Opitz, he planted 7,000 Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Pinot Gris vines across seven acres of beautiful land on the island of St Mary’s.
We are delighted to announce that the 2014 and 2015 vintages of the Silver Carn Chardonnay, Silver Carn Pinot Gris, Holy Vale Rose, Holy Vale Pinot Noir classic & Holy Vale Pinot Noir reserve from the Star Castle Holy Vale vineyard are now being served.
Over the past ten years or so, the UK has gained a reputation for producing excellent sparkling wines made up of the traditional Champagne constituent grapes of Chardonnay and Pinot Noir. UK producers have been less successful at making still wines from these same grapes, mainly because the colder climate in the UK is more suited to producing Germanic Rieslings and the like. However, a combination of the micro-climate on the Isles of Scilly, Robert’s passionate commitment and perfectionism, paired with the steadfast support and advice of Willi Opitz mean that the new vineyard is now one of a handful in the UK producing fine Chardonnays and Pinot Noirs and one of, if not the only one producing Pinot Gris.
The wines are currently being served at the Star Castle’s restaurant to accompany the award winning menu, however guests of the hotel and visitors to the vineyard can also enjoy a glass of wine on the vineyard’s deck in the most lovely surroundings. Also on offer is a delicious locally produced Lobster Lunch, which can be pre-booked and includes a glass of HolyVale wine and a fresh lobster, caught by Robert each morning click here to read more.
Even without the possibility of tasting these fine wines, Britain’s most southerly vineyard is a delight to visit. Described by world-renowned wine expert, Michael Broadbent (author of Vintage Wine: 50 years of tasting) as “one of the most beautiful vineyard sites in the world.” This newest UK winery has been cleverly converted from an old barn which also plays host to an exhibition “The Story of Wine”, telling the story of a year in the life of a vineyard and the winemaking process.
The Vineyard is open March to October inclusive, Monday to Friday 12:30 – 16:30, weekends are by appointment only. Visitors are welcome to visit the vineyard free of charge, but also on offer are wine tastings, which are hosted by Robert himself and include tastings of five wines, including some from the vineyard itself, as well as tasty tapas chosen specially to pair perfectly with each wine. The wine tastings last up to 90 minutes and cost £18.50 per person, for more information click here.
If after reading this you’ve built up quite a thirst, The Star Castle also offers wine weekends on several dates throughout the year. For more information click here.
If you would like more information on any aspects of the vineyard, give us a call on 01720 422317 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information on HolyVale Wines, visit www.holyvalewines.co.uk