OUR WINEMAKING PHILOSOPHY
Our low-intervention, Traditional Method, Vintage Sussex Sparkling wines are a true expression of our terroir. Produced from hand-harvested grapes that are whole-bunch pressed and patiently matured, on lees and in bottle to develop rich, autolytic notes, with a low dosage that emphasises the purity of our fruit. We aim to preserve the wonderful natural flavours of the grapes with as little intervention as possible.
Discover our portfolio of
SUSSEX SPARKLING WINES
At Rathfinny we produce four vintage, traditional method English sparkling wines – Blanc de Noirs, Blanc de Blancs, Rosé and Classic Cuvée.
Blanc de Noirs
Our most prestigious Sussex Sparkling wine made from predominantly Pinot Noir grapes grown and hand-harvested on the Rathfinny Wine Estate.
Blanc de Blancs
Made from a blend of predominantly Burgundy clones of Chardonnay grapes grown and hand-harvested on the Rathfinny Wine Estate.
A Pinot Noir dominated Sussex Sparkling wine, with a red-fruit style that beautifully showcases the increased presence of Pinot Noir within the blend.
Our 'house-style' Sussex Sparkling. Made from Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay grapes grown and hand-harvested on the Rathfinny Estate.
The time-honoured methods for making sparkling wine, developed over centuries in the Champagne region of France and elsewhere, are being adopted and refined at Rathfinny.
Our single-site Vineyard is tended to by our joint Vineyard Managers, Ian and David, and their team. The main grape varieties planted at Rathfinny are Pinot Noir, Chardonnay, and Pinot Meunier.
Traditional winemaking processes are under the careful control of our Winery Manager, Tony Milanowski. Sussex Sparkling wine is crafted in the Traditional Method, where the secondary fermentation takes place in the bottle, after which it is left to age on the yeast lees for a minimum of 15 months to develop wonderful autolytic notes. On occasion, some fermentation and/or ageing takes place in oak barrels to develop even more complexity.
A Year in the Winery
Discover a year in our Winery and what it takes to make outstanding, world-class sparkling wine. Winery operations are fairly seasonal and routine but that doesn’t mean there isn’t space for innovation and experimentation in our Winery team!
In October the Estate is busy with all the harvest action.
After the first fermentation, the wines undergo malolactic fermentation.
In spring we start blending our wines.
The wines are bottled and undergo their secondary fermentation.
Find out more about our Seven Sisters Spirits and Cradle Valley still wines.
THE Sussex PDO
The establishment of a Sussex wine PDO (Protected Designation of Origin) ensures that Sussex wines will continue to be considered among the very best in the world. The tighter rules reflect the quality of wine made in Sussex, ensuring provenance and quality.