In 2021, there was a flurry of activity on social media about the launch of a Yorkshire Wine Trail. Whilst I was aware of Yorkshire having a couple of vineyards which I had previously visited on Food & Drink Tours with my business Real Yorkshire Tours, I thought that it was worth exploring this further.
On visiting the Yorkshire Wine Trail website and speaking to some of the vineyards involved it opened up a whole new window into the Yorkshire wine scene which is growing and prospering in the region.
Firstly, some key facts. Did you know that:
- Yorkshire has 16 Commercial Vineyards
- Yorkshire has 9 Wineries with more on their way
- Over 100,000 bottles of wine were produced in Yorkshire last year
- Yorkshire Fizz has won many awards and is up there with anything produced down South!
As well as the 16 Commercial Vineyards, there are more and more people starting to plant vines on their land as Yorkshire’s climate gets warmer and people start to indulge growing wines as a hobby as part of a passion for wine.
The Yorkshire Wine Trail is in its infancy with 6 founder members, but 3 more vineyards in discussion about getting involved. It was launched on 19th June 2021 by Wine GB – Midlands & North.
Ian Sargent – owner of Laurel Vines near Aike and Chair of Wine GB – Midlands & North is one of the people behind the formation of the Yorkshire Wine Trail. He explained the idea behind the trail was “to help put Yorkshire on the map for travel enthusiasts, who enjoyed food, wine and the journey it takes them on”.
Ian’s daughter Rebekah who is in charge of Sales & Marketing at Laurel Vines is also helping manage the social media for the Yorkshire Wine Trail. She says “it’s all about raising the profile of this region with its many vineyards and wines”.
The website aims to highlight the fact that Yorkshire not only has a wine industry, where people can visit the vineyards, buy Yorkshire wine and in most cases take a tour and tasting experience. It also give people extra reasons to visit the region. The website gives ideas of other places to visit and stay locally to where the vineyards are based.
The 6 Vineyards which form the tour are located across the region and offer a great selection of distinctive wines. Below are details of the 6 locations:
Woodlesford near Leeds
Carlton Towers Walled Garden
5 miles south-east of Selby
Aike near Driffield
Little Wold Vineyard
South Cave, Yorkshire Wolds
Nun Monkton, York
Westow, just outside Malton
I was lucky enough to take a journalist out for a couple of days on a private tour of the vineyards as part of the launch. This gave me chance to recce the areas around the vineyards and put together some interesting itineraries. We had a great few days out one of which was in The Yorkshire Wolds, one of Yorkshire’s lesser known areas where we explored historic villages and wonderful chalk upland countryside before visiting Laurel vines and Little Wold Vineyard for private tastings.
The journalist Damien Gabet even mentioned me in his articles in both The Daily Telegraph and The Guardian.
Even if doing a tour of the Yorkshire Dales or North York Moors, it is great to stop on the way back on a sunny day to sit with clients whilst they enjoy a glass of wine, over looking a beautiful vineyard with great views.
With Yorkshire starting to become recognised as the UK’s unofficial “Food Capital”, the rise of the Yorkshire Wine Trail will only lead to more people visiting the region, particularly to experience a great food and drink offering as well as Yorkshire’s famous hospitality.
To find out more about the Yorkshire Wine Trail or to click through and find more about each of the individual vineyards and wines – visit www.yorkshirewinetrail.co.uk
About the Author:
Tim Barber is a Yorkshire Blue Badge Tourist Guide, living in Burley in Wharfedale on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales. He runs Real Yorkshire Tours – a driver guided business offering a variety of tours throughout Yorkshire. With a Geography degree and a passion for history, Tim offers entertaining days out for visitors to “God’s own county” and prides himself on bringing Yorkshire’s heritage, culture and landscape to life. He also has his own blog – click here to see it!