September 12th saw the start of the 2019 grape harvest here at Biddenden, kicking off with Ortega, the variety which is used to produce our signature wine, Biddenden Ortega.
The full harvest is carried out by hand, and with the glorious late summer sunshine that we are being treated to, it makes picking an enjoyable experience for all. All of our grapes are grown here on the Biddenden estate, and once picked they take a short journey back down the lane and into the winery where we press on the same day as picking before filling into our stainless steel tanks in the winery.
It will take a couple of weeks to work our way through the Ortega, which we will pick fully before moving on to each of the remaining ten varieties of grapes as they ripen; usually this is the white varieties such as Bacchus, Huxelrebe and Reichensteiner, followed by red Pinot Noir, Dornfelder & Gamay and finally Schönburger, which turns a beautiful pink colour as it ripens and may be seen in the final block of vines as you return to the vineyard shop from our self guided vineyard walk.
There’s still time to join us for one of our open tours, which run on Saturday until the end of September, or why not visit at your leisure and take a look at the vineyard whilst the vines are fully laden with grapes. More about visiting us may be found here.