Carden Park’s 2023 Vineyard Harvest

Carden Park is home to an impressive 3-acre commercial vineyard; the biggest in the North West. The vineyard was established over 30 years ago and it boasts just under 4,000 vines, hosting two grape varieties. Each year our vineyard is harvested during early autumn (16th October in 2023) to produce our popular Carden Estate Reserve Sparkling Wine.

How much was harvested from the vineyard this year?

The Carden Park team harvested an impressive 16.25 tonnes of grapes this autumn, which is our largest harvest to-date by 8%. The success of the harvest is hard to determine, but we believe this is predominantly due to the desirable weather conditions, with the UK being particularly dry and warm between the flowering cycle of the grapes (May – June). The crop was also able to avoid an early frost that we have experienced in recent years.

This yield is predicted to equate to 15,500 bottles of home-grown wine. This estimation is provided by The HalfPenny winemakers whom we collaborate in the creation process. They take into account the weight of the harvest and the disgorging process which is then divided by 750ml to provide the total amount of bottles we can expect to achieve.

Carden Park’s 2023 Vineyard Harvest

What type of grape can you find in our UK vineyard?

You can find two types of grapes in our vineyard; Mainly the Seyval Blanc variety alongside Pinot Noir. These were carefully selected to be conditioned to thrive in the UK climate. The main grape variety Seyval Blanc is a French-American hybrid, meaning the region they are grown and trained in is very similar to our own region.

The bulk of the grapes harvested will be used to create our very popular Carden Reserve Sparkling White Wine. However, we will also be intermingling 5% of the second Pinot Noir grape variety to create our Carden Reserve Sparkling Rose Wine.

What is involved in the harvesting process of our Cheshire Vineyard?

When the weather starts to turn colder, and the grapes start turning a yellowy-green colour, our skilled Estate’s team begin to test the sugar levels in our grapes. This is done using a tool called a reflectometer. They are looking for the alcohol levels to be between 7.5% and 8%. Once this desirable level is reached our 20-strong team of greenkeepers are called into action.

Armed with secateurs and picking trays, this is a very manual process to secure the most out of the grape harvest. Each person will decant their batch into a ‘grape bin’ which when full from the team’s efforts, will be lifted and carefully stacked for transportation. This process can take around 48 hours to complete.

The vineyard will now de-leaf and rest until January. The Estate’s team will then start training next years shoots on-to the wires; 4 shoots on each vine, with two bent down to ensure they grows correctly. Think of this process like physiotherapy for vines, stretching them to grow in a manageable manner. Eventually, we will be left with two viable finest that will be meticulously cared for until the next harvest.

Carden Park’s 2023 Vineyard Harvest

Where is the wine processed from our vineyard?

The grapes are transported to the HalfPenny Green Winemakers in Staffordshire, which will use the following process:

  • The skin and pips are removed from the grapes
  • Then sulphur is added to the remaining grape juice for preservation
  • After a designated time frame, the juice is decanted into bottles from the vat and sugar is added
  • The bottles are placed in a cage and turned at regular intervals for up to 12 months
  • After this process, the liquid will be pasted again, reviewed according to taste and the sugar levels amended per our requirements
  • The bottles are then placed back in the cage to repeat the process for another 6 to 12 months
  • When the fermentation process is completed after 18 months, the wine is discouraged. This is a process of tilting the bottles at a 45-degree angle to lure the sediment into the neck. The top 2 inches of the bottle are frozen and released from the process. The bottles are then topped up with wine to the desired level
  • The finished product is then corked, labelled and transported back to Carden Park for distribution to our guests

The entire lifecycle of the Carden Estate Reserve Wine processing will take two years.

Where to sample our homegrown Carden Estate Wine?

Our Carde Park Estate Reserve is available throughout the hotel and 5-star spa; to purchase by the glass or if you’re celebrating by the bottle. For the full Carden Park experience, we recommend visiting our fine dining restaurant which aptly inherited its name: The Vines. Here you can experience an unforgettable tasting menu paired with an incredible selection of wines; including a sample of our Carden Estate Reserve.

A note from our sommelier Patryk Kapelinski: ” The long lasting perlage in the Carden Reserve is a perfect pairing for succulent dishes like the British Classic Fish & Chips. The harmonious finish and vivid acidity also matches a variety of freshly prepared white meats and seafood. The wine also makes a perfect aperitif.

May of our guests enjoy continuing their Carden Park experience at home, as our Carden Reserve is available to purchase from the main hotel reception.


Carden Park’s 2023 Vineyard Harvest


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