Drinking

Rathfinny Estate, Sussex

Rathfinny Wine Estate is a family-run vineyard in East Sussex. Head over to sample its world-class sparkling wines, dine in its Michelin-recommended Tasting Room restaurant and wander the estate around the Rathfinny Trail. 

The sprawling Rathfinny Estate is a 600-acre wine estate spread out across sunny south-facing slopes in the Sussex South Downs. In the process of becoming one of the largest single vineyards in Europe, the vineyard is dedicated to making world-class sparkling wines that rival Champagne for quality, taste and experience. Needless to say, if you’re a fan of wines, it’s a must-visit. 

Started in 2010, the young Rathfinny Wine Estate is already one of the biggest names in the UK for sparkling wines and its reputation is travelling across the world of vino with speed. Making the most of its south-facing aspect and the county’s chalky soil and temperate climes, it has all the perfect ingredients to propel its wines into the grapey stratosphere and produce the most highly quaffable beverages going. 

You’re in for a real treat if you’ve never been to Rathfinny Estate before. Of course, at the top of the agenda is the estate’s vineyard tours and wine tasting sessions, which allow you to stroll through the vineyard with a guide and learn about how Rathfinny’s artisan crafters turn their five variety of grapes into unique wines. Alongside the fascinating insights, another of the tour’s highlights are the beautiful views that sweep away to the far horizon. 

If the incredible views, interesting history and expert knowledge haven’t already piqued your attention (unlikely, we know), then the wines certainly will. At the end of the tour, you can look forward to sampling the fruits of the estate’s labour in the form of Sussex sparkling wines, stills and Seven Sisters spirits, as well as a winemaker’s lunch. Happily, all wines are available to buy onsite from the shop, so you can take a bottle or two of your favourite home with you.

Adding to the appeal, the estate’s restaurant, the Michelin-recommended Tasting Room, is also open on select days for lunch and dinner. With a stunning backdrop of the vineyard and with views across the South Downs, it makes for a lovely spot to sit and enjoy the menus’ seasonal offerings. With set dinner menus sampling land, sea and garden, there is something to suit every taste. 

For a post-tasting wander or for a lovely activity another day, you can also set your sights upon the estate’s walking trail. Starting from the Cellar Door, you can follow the marked wooden signposts around the entire estate along the Rathfinny Trail, wandering past wildflower-peppered grass banks and enjoying the panoramas over the area’s lush green countryside, woodland and of course the vineyard itself.

With a variety of events and gorgeous sights and scenery, Rathfinny Estate offers an ideal day out with friends and family in Sussex. 

Feeling inspired? Take a look through our stunning Sussex retreats here.

Website | Rathfinny Estate, Alfriston, East Sussex BN26 5TU | 01323 871031

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