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Gusbourne to grow its West Sussex vines in 2020

Published:  10 April, 2019

Gusbourne Estate is planning on increasing its acreage in West Sussex with vines to be planted across 57 acres.

The additional plantings, which are due to take place next year, will take the total acreage under vine to 136 in West Sussex.

The estate already has 152 acres planted in its original home of Kent.

Since 2013, the sparkling wine producer has farmed across county lines, and expects the new vines to help maintain quality as production grows.

“Expanding our vineyard holdings in West Sussex gives us the opportunity to increase production, as well as the flexibility to blend from a wider selection of high quality fruit, as we seek to make the finest sparkling wines,” chief winemaker, Charlie Holland, said.

The new vines will follow on from Gusbourne’s approach of planting the classic Champagne varieties from predominantly Burgundian clones.

Parcels are fermented separately to determine the style of each plot, then blended together to achieve consistency and house style.

Vineyard manager Jon Pollard has been with the estate since the beginning, planting Gusbourne’s first vines in Appledore, Kent, in 2004, before expanding to neighbouring Sussex.

Speaking of the opportunity to experiment with land and yields, he said: “The predominantly chalk soils in West Sussex provide elegance and structure, drive and energy, whereas the clay and sand in our unique microclimate in Kent supply the power, intensity and sheer weight of rich, ripe fruit.”