A chilly Saturday in November saw the inaugural Bubbles and Botanicals Fair at South Lodge in West Sussex.
As a celebration of Sussex sparkling wine, craft gin, and local business, Sussex Exclusive was delighted to co-host the event in conjunction with Ritchie Phillips. There were 15 stalls, with 10 local wine producers, three craft gin producers, and two local drinks merchants, namely The Horsham Cellar and All Things Drink.
Guests included local MP Jeremy Quin and everyone was welcomed with a complimentary glass of Sussex bubbles before joining the stallholders to try, buy and learn more about the many and diverse drinks that were represented.
The wine producers were: Ridgeview Wine Estate, Stopham Vineyard, House Coren, Fox and Fox, Plumpton College Wine Division, Roebuck Estates, Leonardslee & Benguela Cove, Downsview Vineyard, Bluebell Vineyard Estates and Tickerage, representing vineyards from across West and East Sussex both large and small.
Gin producers were Harley House Distillery, Slake Spirits, and Cabin Pressure Spirits, again representing gin makers from across the county and with a range of other drinks including rum and a Bacchus Elixir!
As the afternoon’s testing got underway, the sipping was pleasantly interrupted by speakers from All Things Drink, a Sussex-based online drinks company that was showcasing a range of alcohol-free drinks, and local wine merchant The Horsham Cellar, which showcased a variety of different wines from the area. And of course, the free raffle was a welcome break as six lucky guests won a bottle of wine or gin!
Word on the street is that a few taxis had to be swiftly booked for some of the enthusiastic tasters, and as the sun set over the stunning grounds of South Lodge, laughter, the clinking of glasses, and a gentle buzz floated into the foyer!
Sussex has such an enormous pool of talent, and it was wonderful to see so many people supporting local producers and learning more about the hard work, dedication, and creativity that goes into a Sussex drinks scene that is on the world stage when it comes to quality and class!
Thank you to everyone who attended or worked hard behind the scenes, and all that remains to be said is that we’ll see you all again next year! Cheers!
You can find out more about the vineyards and craft gin makers who were at this event here: