After a busy December we are back to work here at Kenton Park Estate. It was lovely to have you all here over the festive season. To have the winery filled with the sounds of sizzling hot stones and melting fondue cheese made all our preparations worth it after having spent some precarious hours atop ladders lighting the candles in The Barrel Room and wrapping up pigs in blankets (not at the same time!).
It was great to see you getting cosy enjoying our mulled wine and toasted marshmallows around the firepits and we were glad to hear your amazement at the brand-new hamper baskets and Magnums lining The Tasting Room. We hope that you cracked into them on Christmas morning just like we did. Our new winter cocktail menu went down a treat as well with Blue Blazers being lit and poured outside of Safari huts and Motley Toddies keeping people warm on their strolls through the vines. Milena and Aurelie made sure that no one went hungry whilst admiring our Christmas decorations, authentic French Tartiflette- not often you find that in Devon!
Way back before our festive fiesta we were delighted to be a part of Calob and Sally’s special day, holding their wonderful wedding reception in the winery. Having not hosted anything like it before we were glad to see so many smiles on the day and receive such positive feedback afterwards. Despite a power cut in the early afternoon we managed to provide them with a two-course meal. After thinking that we might have to move everyone down to the house we managed to fix the problem and, in typical Motley Cry fashion, everything worked out in the end. We hope to see them back soon!
We also had lots of fun in early December with Harriet and Faye’s hen party. We provided them with a unique experience starting with plenty of Cheeky Fizz, our 2020 prosecco style rose, before an extensive alpine meal inspired by our new winter menu to line their stomachs!
We then lead them on a short walk up through the vines to our brand new firepit where we introduced them a bit more to The Estate and the landscape of English vineyards in general whilst enjoying plenty of mulled wine and boozy hot chocolates. The weather just about held off for us while we made our way back down to The Tasting Room where we held a speed tasting of our three traditional English sparkling wines and our two gins, at this point we were thankful that we had given everyone a big lunch and made sure that there was plenty of water and snacks around! Finally, we moved on to a quick cocktail masterclass, which as you can imagine, quickly descended into chaos before running a quick mixology competition then leaving them to enjoy an evening bar and some live music- a very fun and unique day!
About halfway through December we welcomed our friends from Lympstone Marine Camp for their Christmas party. They were happy as ever with a generous supply of Loaded Nachos, Mont Blanc Burgers and Flatbread Pizzas washed down with plenty of beers, ciders and whiskey shots. Our lighting set up was a little bit improvised though as we suffered another short power cut- would you believe it! But don’t worry we’ve had it fixed now and everyone was happy to party under fairy lights and an abundance of candles.
We were pleased to welcome the newest member of The Motley Cru in December, Hunky, who has come to help us expand our herd of Swiss Valley Blacknose Sheep. He seems to be getting on very well with the ladies so hopefully we should be welcoming some new editions to our little flock in the spring! Hunky is not the only new edition to The Estate; we have also finished work on our new firepits. Creating cosy little areas to enjoy our wine whilst looking out over the vines, it was lovely to see some of you sat around sipping cocktails on Saturday evenings when we were open.
You’ll be glad to know that we have also finished the installation of a brand-new Safari Hut! This new hut sits at the bottom of our Bacchus plantation and is much bigger than the ones we already have. With space to seat a small party we can already hear the corks popping and the laughter roaring out from the sides. The new hut is a great place to sit after a stroll through the vines, after weaving up through Pinot Noir, along the top of Bacchus and back down the side we’ll be waiting for you in there ready to hand you a glass of whatever you choose, there’s even space for us to join you in there if you’ll allow us…
After the success of the vineyard tours last summer we have been busy brainstorming new and exciting ways for you to create unforgettable memories here with us. Recently we have been welcoming groups on our wonderfully wintery tours, showing people all around The Estate with heated cocktails to keep them warm alongside firepit pitstops and workshops in The Barrel Room so that groups can carry home with them the essence of life here at Kenton Park Estate. With the imminent introduction of our new range of electric mountain bikes we have been crafting a route around the local area for you to enjoy with some sparkling wine riding in your baskets.
We are on the look out for a pilot to help us make use of our helipad and create a luxury once in a lifetime experience, seeing The Estate from a whole new perspective- Cuvee in the clouds! As I’m sure many of you are aware of by now we are all about trying new things, creating new experiences and making the most of what we have so there is boundless potential in what is to come.
A huge part of our ethos too is that we are as self-sustainable as possible, that is why if you look up at the roof of our winery building you will noticed it’s covered in solar panels. We are currently constructing an outdoor kitchen so that we can expand our horizons and make use of the space that we have around the front of the winery building. Alongside this we want to plant our very own “Kitchen Garden”, in a similar vein to our Herb Garden which supplies us with fresh rosemary and mint for our cocktails and cooking. We are on the lookout for assistance from an experienced horticulturalist to help us develop this concept so keep an eye out for more information coming soon if this sparks your interest.
Everyone here at Kenton Park Estate is really looking forward to a fruitful 2022 packed with new experiences and laughter along the way. We are also very excited to be welcoming you all back through our gates when the weather gets better. Until then we will keep you updated on what we’re up to. Stay safe and once again happy new year!
All the best,
The Motley Cru