Tout savoir sur les vins anglais

Everything you need to know about English wines

Not so long ago, English wine did not have a good reputation, and few fans paid attention to it. But in recent years, British wines have enjoyed a certain success, and we can now uncork very good bottles straight from the United Kingdom. Let's discover English wines .

The history of English wine

Wine production is not new to Wales and England. On the other hand, what is new is the quality of the still wines and sparkling wines that British winemakers now offer. Because the history of English wines has not always been very glorious.

From Antiquity to the 17th century, the chaotic history of British wine

As in France, it was the Romans who tried to plant the first vines in Great Britain . These plants, imported from Champagne and Germany, were cruelly lacking in sunlight, and wine production remained anecdotal for a long time, and the quality was really not there.

The Little Ice Age, in the 13th and 14th centuries, was not going to help anything, and climate cooling was going to get the better of English vineyards . And it is not the dissolution of the monasteries by Henry VIII which will improve the situation, since they were the main producers of wine at the time, nor even the Hundred Years' War.

From then on, wines consumed in Britain came primarily from Western Europe.

Wine: a product reserved for the lower middle class

With the high taxes imposed by the French wine industry, directly linked to the tensions between the two countries, the English are forced to reduce their consumption of wine, and bottles from France are now reserved for the bourgeoisie .

English merchants then tried to find other solutions, and turned to Portuguese wines, more suited to small budgets, but clearly less tasty. At the same time, fighting raged between France and England, and for the British, drinking French wine was treason, until the beginning of the 19th century.

Wine conservation: a turning point in English wine history

Until then, wine was stored in rather round and impractical vials. Then, in the 1770s, cylindrical bottles developed in England. It is now possible to store wine bottles horizontally , which allows the cork to remain moist, and therefore the wine to age without losing its qualities.

This revelation will serve as a revolution in English consumption of French wines . Indeed, if the elite continued to import wine from France, conservation still posed a problem. With these cylindrical bottles, the English discovered that after aging, red wines were even better.

Anecdote: the French have long turned their back on wines for aging, judging that a wine should be drunk young. It took them several years to realize that the English were right, and that aging wine was a real asset.

Opening up to Europe and Australia

At the end of the conflicts, the English began to travel again in Europe, and discovered the little pleasures that French wine offered. It is even part of daily consumption. British winemakers then took a closer interest in the production of English wines , and worked hard to find grape varieties capable of adapting to the country's cold climate.

At the same time, global warming has pushed French Champagne houses to invest in British soil to produce their sparkling wines.

Today, English wines, mainly white wines and a few red and rosé wines, are on the rise and production in recent years is more than promising.

English wines from our estates

Today, the MDCV group has 7 wine estates, 3 of which are located in the United Kingdom. Our 3 English estates then produce quality sparkling wines and still wines.

  • Harlot - sparkling white brut: made in Essex, England, this sparkling white wine is a clever blend of chardonnay, pinot noir, pinot meunier and bacchus. With its aromas of elderflower, apricot and pear, this quality wine from an English vineyard surprises and seduces, whatever the festive moment it accompanies;
  • Harlot - sparkling rosé brut: this English sparkling rosé wine is made from the great French champagne grape varieties (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier), as well as Bacchus, an English hybrid grape variety. It reveals fruity aromas of strawberry and pear, as well as fine bubbles full of energy. It is then the ideal sparkling wine for festive meals;
  • Silver Reign - Sparkling White: This Charmat style wine is an English sparkling wine made from Pinot Meunier, Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Its notes of citrus, pear and green apple are accompanied by fine refreshing bubbles. This sparkling wine is one of the award-winning wines from the Silverhand estate.

Long pushed aside by wine lovers, the English wine industry is now coming out on top and offering excellent vintages. Then discover the sparkling wines from our English estates .


Our selection of wines

New
Rosé Wine 2023 AOP Côtes de ProvenceGrande Récolte
CHF 79
Box of 6 bottles - 75 cl
More info
Sale -34%
Rosé 2022 AOP Côtes de ProvenceGrande Récolte
Regular price CHF 79Sale priceCHF 52
Cardboard of 6 bottles - 75 cl
More info
Exclu web
Sold Out
Rosé 2021 AOP Côtes de ProvenceGrande Récolte
CHF 89.70
Cardboard of 6 bottles - 75 cl
More info
Exclu web
White 2017 AOP Côtes de ProvenceChâteau de Berne Grande Cuvée
CHF 120
Cardboard of 6 bottles - 75 cl
More info