Updated: Mar 5
We’ve said it before, but we do enjoy welcoming old and new friends to Welcombe Hills Vineyard. There's always a lot of interest in the vineyard and the English wine we produce in Warwickshire, so here are some of the more frequent questions we get asked on tours and events! If there are any we’ve missed off, feel free to get in touch and ask us.....
Where are you located?
Have you lived in Stratford-upon-Avon for years but never knew we were here? You're not alone! You've probably driven past us without knowing we were there. The vineyard was first planted in 2001, and we started managing the vineyard and producing wine in 2018.
If you look hard enough, you can find us hiding on top of the Welcombe Hills, on Kings Lane just after The Farm and before you get to Snitterfield village. On event days we mark the entrance with our branded flags so you don't miss it. We are only 25 mins from Birmingham and a short hop from the Cotswolds.
When can I visit Welcombe Hills Vineyard?
We're open on selected days from May to September for pre-booked vineyard tours and wine tastings, and you can book online for these through our website.
Do you have a restaurant on site?
Whilst we don't have a restaurant onsite, we ARE able to cater for private events. There are also plans afoot to offer a food element to our tours, whilst catering for all dietary requirements. Stay in touch for more info on this coming soon!
Can I book to stay overnight?
Although we don't have any bookable accommodation available at Welcombe Hills Vineyard, you are certainly spoilt for choice around us! With guest houses, B&B's, holiday lets, glamping and campsites right on our doorstep, there is also a wide selection of hotels to be found just down the road in Stratford-upon-Avon . If you're planning a weekend break, we're always happy to offer recommendations!
I came on your tour last year (and loved it!). Can I just taste the wine this time?
Yes! This is something we're thrilled to be introducing for 2021.
Tasting Tables can now be booked on selected dates just to enjoy our wines by the glass! Maybe you just want to try our latest vintages, or enjoy a glass of Warwickshire Fizz in the sunshine overlooking the stunning countryside? Dates will be available to book online soon, so join our mailing list to be first in the queue.
What's involved in a vineyard tour?
All our vineyard tours were sold out in 2020, and we're putting on more events for 2021. Our Vineyard Tour & Wine Tasting events are just £15 per person, and are a great way to explore the vineyard and find out more about what we do here. You'll start with a guided tour of the vines, learning about the history of the vineyard, the types of grapes we grow, the work involved in looking after the vineyard and how the wine is produced. Then, it's time to sit down for a tutored tasting of 4 of our award-winning wines. Vineyard Tour & Wine Tasting event tickets can be booked online >>
Can I just turn up or is pre-booking required?
At the moment, pre-booking is essential to visit the vineyard. We are unable to accept drop-ins due to both Covid guidelines and our licensing restrictions. We're really flexible though, and if you book an event and then your plans change you can cancel or change your tickets without charge up to 24 hours before. Or, if there's space, you're welcome to book a last minute ticket for either our vineyard tours or tasting tables!
Do you have parking available onsite?
Yes, free parking in our field is available for all our visitors. Alternatively, we're happy to arrange transport for you if you'd prefer. Our postcode is CV37 0QB and, as a guide, it's approximately £10 in a taxi from Stratford-upon-Avon.
Do you have disabled access?
Most of the vineyard is accessible, apart from our tasting room which is up 1 flight of stairs. If you have specific accessibility requirements do let us know in advance so that we can accommodate you.
Are dogs allowed at Welcombe Hills Vineyard?
Yes! We welcome all well behaved dogs on a lead to visit during most events. Dogs must remain with their owners at all times.
Are children allowed at Welcombe Hills Vineyard?
As a small vineyard, we're all about the wine here. Children are welcome onsite but there's not much to interest them once they are here. Our wine tastings are strictly for over-18s only, and if you're lucky enough to look young enough you may be asked for ID.
Can I book a private event?
Our sharing platters were the most popular in 2020, with boards of cured meat, cheeses, breads and chutneys to complement our wines but we also delivered afternoon teas and a 4 course wine tasting menu last year too! We’re small enough to be flexible to create a bespoke menu that fits your budget - email us to find out more.
Do you do weddings?
As a general rule, we don't host weddings at Welcombe Hills Vineyard. However, if you're planning an outside wedding of 25 people or less, then we're open to ideas!
Can I help pick grapes at Harvest time?
Yes you can! Our harvests take place anywhere from mid-September to mid-October. Around the end of the first week in September, we start testing all the grapes and measure their sugar levels and acidity levels. Each grape variety has a different optimum so we track them until we feel they are at their peak. With 9 different varieties, this means we may have 3-4 harvest dates each year. The Pinot Précoce and Bacchus tend to be the early runners, whereas we give the Pinot Noir and Sauvignon Blanc the longest time on the vine as we can.
We welcome volunteers and you can register your interest for Harvest 2021 on our website – we’ll send out an invitation email 1 week prior for you to confirm if you are still available to help. We start picking around 9am, and aim to finish for lunch. Lunch and a glass of wine included!
What grape varieties grow best in the UK?
It will come as no surprise to you to discover that cooler climate grapes fare best in the cooler English weather.
At Welcombe Hills Vineyard we grow (in order of volume): Pinot Noir, Bacchus, Pinot Précoce (Fruhbürgunder), Chardonnay, Auxerrois, Dornfelder, Seyval Blanc, Sauvignon Blanc and Kerner. From these grapes we make a variety of still and sparkling English wines, offering something for every palate.
How much work is involved in looking after the vines?
There's always jobs to be done on the vineyard, all year round! Whether it's winter pruning, tying down, bud-rubbing, leaf thinning we're outside come rain or shine looking after the vines. There is an art and science behind every one of these jobs and we never stop learning.
Where do you make the wine?
Once the grapes have been harvested, we take them to a winery in South Staffordshire who crush and press the grapes, and then ferment our wine in steel tanks. We finish the wine according to taste before the wine is bottled and returned to us.
How much wine does Welcombe Hills Vineyard produce?
When the existing vineyard is in full production, it has the capacity to produce up to 6,000 bottles of wine each year. We are planting more Pinot Noir and Bacchus vines at Welcombe Hills Vineyard in 2021, and when these vines reach maturation (around 2024) we will start to see our capacity increase up to 10,000 bottles annually.
How much wine do you get from one vine?
This depends on so many variables! In an ideal year, on a Pinot Noir vine for example, at optimum production we would expect at least 2 bottles of wine from each vine. However, late frosts, cool summers, hail storms and disease (all of which we experienced in 2020 🤪) can impact on the grape yield each year.
Which wines do you produce?
With nine different varieties of wine grapes grown at Welcombe Hills Vineyard, we are able to produce a variety of English wines.
The Tempest, English Bacchus
Viola, English Bacchus (specially selected from local vineyards)
Twelfth Night, English Sauvignon Blanc & Bacchus
Othello, English Pinot Noir & Pinot Précoce
A Rose by Another Other Name, English Rosé from Dornfelder & Pinot Précoce
Ophelia, English Sparkling Wine - Pinot Noir, Auxerrois and Chardonnay (traditional method)
Ophelia Rosé, English Sparkling Rosé - Pinot Précoce and Dornfelder (traditional method)
How can I taste your wines before I buy?
We welcome guests to Welcombe Hills Vineyard on our Vineyard Tour and Tasting Events. These are held on select dates through the summer, from May to September. Priced at £15 per person, they include a guide tour of the vines and the chance to taste at least 4 of our wines.
Tastings packs will be available to purchase online. Stay in touch to find out more!
Where can I buy your wines?
Our full range of wines, gin and gift experiences are available in our ONLINE SHOP>>
We offer FREE local delivery within 20 miles of Stratford-upon-Avon and for orders over £100.
Or, through our specialist online Wine Merchants:
Are your products suitable for vegans and vegetarians?
Yes they are! This is one of our most frequent questions…..before we embarked on our vineyard journey we had no idea vegetarian wine was a “thing”. These days we know it’s all down the choice of fining substance, which is introduced to the wine to remove all the gunk left over from creating the wine.
Traditionally, various animal-derived products were used to clarify the wine such as milk protein, egg albumen, fish oil and gelatin but these days there are plenty of animal-free alternatives including potato/pea protein, polyvinylpolypyrrolidone (PVPP) and bentonite clay. These vegan-friendly fining agents are added to our wine at the end to absorb this insoluble matter, making it heavy enough to sink to the bottom where it is easily removed.
Do you sell gift vouchers?
Yes, we most certainly do! Vouchers can be purchased for Vineyard Tours, Adopt a Vine packs (available before the start of each season), Grow Your Own Micro Vineyard pack (limited edition for 2021) and also for any amount for purchases in our online shop.
Gift vouchers come in elegant presentation packs, making beautiful gifts.
Do you deliver?
We offer FREE local delivery within a 20 miles radius of
Stratford-upon-Avon. For further afield within the UK we use a specialist courier and shipping costs apply. Currently, we are unable to ship outside the UK.
How can I find out more?
We’ve lots of plans for 2021, which we're excited to put into action as the latest Covid-19 restrictions are relaxed. Sign up to our newsletter and follow us on Facebook and Instagram to find out what's in the pipeline!