Hello Everyone, what an exciting last few weeks we’ve had! The countdown to re-opening is well and truly open and like everyone else, I can’t wait for the Beer Gardens to open especially as the sun is just starting to come out of hiding. With that in mind we’ve been seriously busy behind the scenes getting everything ready for when we can first welcome you all back through the doors!
We’ve had some brilliant days coming up with new recipes for the Menu, there is some AMAZING food coming your way including the NEW Motley Cru Mont Blanc Burger.
The best part of coming up with new Food Dishes for The Motley Cru Cafe Bar (now more of Bistro) is getting "JP" our mad Frenchman photographer to come to the Winery and take the most incredible photos of the Food being created in the Vineyard Kitchen by our very own "Motley Cru" Chef Milena. In between shots, he drinks about 5 cups of coffee and has plenty of “fags”... a true Frenchman. JP is a genius at what he does and we always have a good laugh together.
Of course the other positive outcome from these Photography Shoots is the huge amount of Food available at the end of the day .....our signature Paella Dish, The Motley Cru Mont Blanc Burgers, the incredible Dim Sum (steamed Chinese Dumplings), boozy Cream Teas, loaded Nachos, Tandoori Chicken wraps, Tiramisu and Whisky Bread & Butter pudding to name a few!
A Motley Cru favourite ....
It's the delicate fragrance of the fresh Lemon Thyme that transforms this Risotto
Paired with our very popular Sauvignon Blanc “Runner Ducks”
Who can resist a freshly Baked Camembert Cheese drizzled with our very own Honey from the Estate & sprigs of our freshly picked Rosemary served with warm crusty Bread. Heaven!
Pair it with a Glass of our “Flying Start” Shiraz ... There's always a fight amongst the Motley Cru as to who stole the Baked Camembert!
Crushed Meringue with Passionfruit Mascarpone Cream & topped with Raspberries & Raspberry coulis....
Dine in the Vines
Whilst these Photographic Shoots have certainly been no good for the waistline... we’re super pleased with the Menu we’ve created and can’t wait to get back to serving great food with great company amongst the Vines! And speaking of amongst the Vines .....
African Dining Huts
There's something else NEW here in the Vineyard .... we wanted to enhance our Dining in the Vines Experience this year that so many of you loved last Summer ... and so we have these fabulous African Dining Huts with stunning thatched roof to make it even more magical and perfect for our NEW Tipsy Afternoon Teas .... oh Yes ... these are as good as they look ....
new cocktail menu
We haven't just been creating a new Food Menu, we’ve also been working hard on this year's Cocktail Menu for the Friday Night Pizza & Cocktail evenings. So many of you have been asking when these will be back up and running. We can finally say they will definitely be back for early July at the latest, we’re absolutely buzzing to get these going again, the reception from you all last year was phenomenal!
We’ve got some really exciting NEW Cocktails to share with you all. Our Cocktails have gone up a notch for this year!
Gin and Whisky Mixology Tours
Speaking of Cocktails, we’ve also got some really exciting news in that we’ve created a NEW Tour Experience for this year - our "Gin and Whisky Mixology Tours”. What makes these so interesting is that we’re not only going to try our own products in these Cocktail, (Cheeky Ginny, Smokin Ginny and our two Kenton Park Estate Whiskies) but we’ll also learn how to make some fantastic Cocktails including some of my all time favourites that I serve in The Motley Cru Bar.
We’ll learn the basics of Mixology, how to craft a delicious drink and have a laugh learning how to do a few cocktail "flair moves". A highlight is always watching ice fly across the room as we practice these moves! If you’re interested in learning how to make amazing Cocktails then check out our Mixology Tours on our website.
Moving onto the Vineyard side of things, its just about creeping back into life. We’re very close to bud burst now and with this spell of hot weather on the way it won’t be long until everything starts to burst back into life. It always amazes us just how quickly the Vines start to blossom. It goes from nothing to a massive canopy of greenery very quickly and then the hard work really starts... It’s a double edged sword really, beautiful but with it - you know the graft is coming.
winery drive ... wow!
Along with the Vines coming back to life, we’ve planted even more Lavender as well as wild Grasses and purple Aliums all along Winery Drive as you first come through the entrance to the Estate. When everything has started to bloom, the entrance is going to be stunning, hopefully you’ll go “WOW” as you drive down towards the Winery Cafe Bar!
Speaking of our entrance, we had an interesting delivery the other day. We welcomed our two wicker Racehorses to stand proud overlooking the Vineyard. Named after the famous racehorses ‘Seabass’ and ‘Secretariat’ they certainly make an impact and look right at home amongst the Vines!
the motley cru deli feast platters
Whilst all this has been going on, so many of you have been booking Vineyard Tours with us which is fantastic to see, we haven’t even started the season yet and we’ve got more Tours booked for this year than we had last year so that’s a really exciting statistic, we can’t wait to welcome you all back, no doubt to demolish our famous Deli Feats Platters (Charcuterie & Cheese and other fabulous local produce).
escape to the vineyard ....
Our Vineyard Wine Lodge and Vineyard Shack Retreats have also been booking up very quickly, we can’t wait to have people back staying with us. If you fancy staying with The Motley Cru here at Kenton Park Estate then definitely get in touch...
cider - new 2020 vintage
In other news, we recently finished blending this year's ‘Hardcore’ Sparkling Cider from our 2020 Harvest of Apples. It’s a pretty sweet job, testing and experimenting with different combinations to produce our delicious Cider! This year's vintage is no exception, it’s incredibly refreshing, we think you’re going to love it! We were blown away with how many of you kept coming back for more in the Winery Cafe Bar last year!! Fear not, there will be enough to consume in copious amounts sat out on the Deck on a Summer's day overlooking the Vineyard... it doesn’t get much better than that does it!
Finally, we’ve got to talk about the podcast “Motley Matters”. I said last time that we might get it back up and running again soon and low and behold we’ve come back with a bang! Already we’ve had some fascinating interviews including one with Ollie Massy Birch, the Director of Fortis Clothing. It was great to get an insight into the challenges and adventures facing a Family business within the Outdoor Clothing industry and how he’s taken the company to new heights.
the rickshaw challenge
We also talked about his incredible experience on the Rickshaw Run in India, which if you haven’t heard of it before, you need to as it's up there with one of the wildest adventures in the world! We hope The Motley Cru will be able to do this challenge in 2022.
We’ve also talked to my good friend Ollie Mitchell on travelling, cycling from Land's End to John O’Groats and undertaking arguably the most physically demanding challenge in the world in the form of an Ironman!
As well as all that .... we’ve got a great new Series on the podcast “The Race to the the perfect Cocktail”, where I’ve pitted my two mates Ollie and Josh against each other in an challenge to produce the best Cocktail live on the pod. There’s a lot of laughs with this one as their knowledge and experience of cocktails is limited to say the least and we certainly had some interesting creations in week one...
So the Podcast is back and booming and also serves as a great way to keep you up to date with all the mad adventures of The Motley Cru going on here so make sure you subscribe to that and don’t miss a thing.
our first adventure into electric vehicles with our new Electric Polaris atv
And before I rush off to Film the next Instagram Live Cocktail making episode (we do hope you follow us on Instagram @kenton_park_estate), there's one last thing to mention which is that we are thrilled to have invested in our first Electric Vehicle (it saves all those arguments about who is going to fill up with fuel) ... introducing our new electric ATV Polaris Ranger. No doubt you will see Josh here (and possibly Max) racing around the Vineyard when you join us on one of our Wine Safari Tours as he delivers the famous Motley Cru Deli Feast Monster Platters up to the top of the Vineyard for the group to feast upon with a Bottle of our hugely popular Gun Dog Escape Sparking Rose Reserve .......
Phew .... I think that’s all I can update you on for now so until next time...