Greyfriars Vineyard

Greyfriars Vineyard Pearl 2022

English Varietal Wine, Surrey, England

Blend: Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, Chardonnay | 12% ABV


Discover this limited-edition wines (third series) celebrating a chapter in our local history and the unsung heroines of the SOE in World War II who trained at the nearby Wanborough Manor. This English white wine is a blend of Pinot Gris, Pinot Blanc, and Chardonnay grapes that celebrates the very best of the North Downs.

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This wine exudes the notes of apple, pear, peach, lemon, and florals.

Service: Serve chilled at 7° to 10°C.

Food Pairing: Excellent with pork, poultry, fish, shellfish, cheese, pasta in white sauce, spicy and vegetarian dishes.

Winemaker: Oliver Key

The current Greyfriars Vineyard was originally set up in 1989 and was one of the first in England to plant the traditional Champagne grape varieties (Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier). 30 years later, in 2011, Mike and Hilary Wagstaff took over with the aim of expanding the vineyard to its current size of 40 acres and to produce stunning English Sparkling Wine, building a state-of-the-art winery complete with an underground chalk cave cellar to accommodate this growth.

The south facing slopes catch the sun throughout the day, helping to dry out morning dampness held by the vine's canopy as well as benefit from the afternoon heat. The slopes prove key for the quality of the wines, allowing for effective air drainage and movement which reduces the risk of both frost in the winter / early spring and disease in the summer.

Vineyard is also connected to Champagne by the same chalky bedrock that goes underneath the channel. This particular soil is porous, helping drain the vineyard of excess water whilst also allowing the vine's roots enough wiggle space to dig deep and anchor the plant effectively.

1* Sustainability Rating: Up & Coming

Greyfriars Vineyard, nestled in Surrey, England, is a family-owned estate steeped in tradition since its establishment in 1989. Under the stewardship of owner Mike Wagstaff, the vineyard has grown over the past 14 years to manage 16 hectares of land, dedicating the majority of their land to vines and around 20% as natural woodland. With an annual production of 450 hectolitres, Greyfriars has a focused team of 6-10 permanent employees and a group of dedicated volunteers during the peak season.

Greyfriars adopts a viticulture approach that prioritises the health of both their vines and the surrounding environment, evidenced by their on-site beehives which contribute to local biodiversity. Sustainability is at the core of their operations, balancing social, economic, and environmental considerations. The vineyard is on a mission to become a recognised leader in English wine production and aims to integrate further into the local community over the next decade.

Facing challenges such as economic pressures, a crowded market, and the unpredictable impacts of climate change, Greyfriars is making strides in sustainability, though they have yet to measure their carbon footprint or establish a Net Zero plan. Their efforts in biodiversity are ongoing, and soil health is maintained through organic compost and reduced tillage. Transitioning towards biological controls and exploring non-sulphur alternatives for mildew control, Greyfriars is taking a cautious approach to pesticide and fungicide use.

In winemaking, minimal intervention is the philosophy, with a focus on crafting clean, appealing wines. Greyfriars utilises bentonite for fining and commercial yeasts for fermentation, maintaining moderate levels of sulphur dioxide for wine stabilisation across their red and white varieties.

While they have not yet obtained organic or biodynamic certifications, Greyfriars is actively pursuing the Sustainable Wines of Great Britain Certification, which would formalise their commitment to environmentally-friendly practices. The vineyard utilises a mix of energy sources and is taking steps towards more sustainable packaging solutions.

Greyfriars plays an active role in the local community, supporting events and charities, and emphasises fair pay and safety for all staff, with a strong female presence in leadership roles.

Greyfriars' current practices and future goals suggest a vineyard earnestly working towards greater sustainability. With a 1* rating, Greyfriars is recognised as up and coming in the sustainability arena and is an emerging example of responsible English winemaking.

White | Still | 75cl | 12% ABV

Vinification: The wine is a blend of both barrels (5 months stirring) and tank-fermented Pinot Gris and some Pinot Blanc and Chardonnay to lift the blend. The Pinot Gris and Pinot Blanc were co-fermented in the tank with half racked to barrel for full malolactic fermentation and six months ageing. The other went through partial malolactic fermentation in the tank to preserve the fruit. The Chardonnay was fermented and aged in barrels for six months (5 months stirring) and was topped with Pinot Gris/ Pinot Blanc for ullage management. There was an addition of tea leaf tannins to the tank fermented wine to reduce the amount of added sulphites.

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