Lympstone Manor unveils its Classic Cuvée

8th September 2023

Chef Michael Caines MBE

SEPTEMBER 2023 // Luxury Devon country house hotel Lympstone Manor is thrilled to announce the launch of its 2020 Classic Cuvée under its “Lympstone Manor Estate” label. Five years after Chef and owner Michael Caines planted 17,500 vines in 2018, the long-anticipated launch marks the first sparkling wine produced from the hotel’s own vineyard, to sit alongside its award-winning 2020 Triassic Pinot Noir, launched in 2022.

Caines has long been passionate about the evolution of English wine and in 2018, created the Lympstone Manor Vineyard with the aim to produce high-quality English sparkling wine utilising the noble Champagne varieties Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Meunier. In partnership with Devon’s Lyme Bay Winery, two wines, to date, have been produced from the Lympstone Manor estate – the 2020 Triassic Pinot Noir, a rich red Pinot Noir christened ‘Triassic’ as a nod to the ancient UNESCO heritage Devon coastline on which the vineyard shares its home and the new Classic Cuvée sparkling wine. The estate will also launch a still Rosé Wine in addition to the Classic Cuvée, to be named “Isabeau” after Michael’s daughter. The Lympstone Manor Estate 2022 Isabeau Rosé is produced from the “taille” pressing at the winery and is a field blend of the Pinot Noir, Chardonnay and Meunier grapes, it is very much in the classic Provencal style with bright fruit and citrus notes underpinned by fine minerality and balanced by mouthwatering acidity. This will be followed by further releases of wine including a barrel aged Chardonnay next year to mark the 7th anniversary of the opening of the hotel.

Michael Caines MBE, Lympstone Manor Chef Patron: “It’s an incredible milestone for Lympstone Manor Hotel to launch its first Classic Cuvée from the 2020 vintage, under the Lympstone Manor Estate title, an award-winning single vineyard estate with a growing collection of wines. I’d would have never imagined saying “award winning”, when I was inspired to plant a vineyard back in 2015, but it was instinctive decision, inspired by my travels to vineyard locations all over Europe. This was just the start of an incredible journey that we have shared with Lyme Bay Winery, who are getting a growing reputation for producing award winning English wines. The 2022 harvest saw the diversification of our portfolio with the addition of our first still Rosé wine, Isabeau, the production of a barrel fermented still Chardonnay and sparkling Blanc de Noirs, all designed with a focus on being food friendly, high in quality and representing the full expression of the grape varieties grown on this unique site.”

Steve Edwards, Lympstone Manor Operations Director: “It is almost overwhelming to suddenly be faced with a raft of quality wine releases that will now come in quick succession after years of patient waiting. The excellent 2020 growing season was our first at Lympstone Manor and has given us the perfect platform to move forward with the knowledge that we already have a site that will be producing amongst the very best still and sparkling wines this country has to offer.

James Lambert, managing director and head winemaker, Lyme Bay Winery: “Made using fruit from the 2020 vintage, the Lympstone Manor Estate Classic Cuvée incorporates beautiful richness from pinot noir, fruit and fragrance from pinot meunier, and stunning layers of depth from chardonnay fermented and aged in a mix of oak and stainless steel. Altogether, it is a wine of elegance and complexity, created to complement the cuisine and ambience of Lympstone Manor both as an aperitif, and to pair with Michael’s signature dishes. All of us at Lyme Bay are thrilled to be part of this project, and to have played a part with Michael, Steve and the team to help bring it to life.

The Classic Cuvée is produced by the méthode traditionelle in the style of a premium English sparkling wine and has richness, depth of flavour and structure. A classic blend of Pinot Noir, Meunier and Chardonnay the wine provides a classical style of sparkling, showing notes of apple, spiced pear and toasted brioche, with a rich and creamy mouse. The wine requires minimal residual sugar to remain poised, elegant, and balanced. The dosage for the sparkling wine was derived from feedback from a number of leading wine journalists who were guests of Lympstone Manor and had the opportunity to sample the wine before this final stage of production. the Classic Cuvée has been partially aged for 9 months in French Oak and aged for a minimum of 3 years on the lees. Like Triassic, the Classic Cuvée has been crafted at Lyme Bay Winery, a dedicated West Country company that shares Caines’ passion for high-quality English wines, with the assemblage of the cuvée made by Michael Caines, Lympstone Manor Operations Director Steve Edwards, Lyme Bay Vineyard Managing Director and Head Winemaker James Lambert, and other wine professionals. Sourced exclusively from the Lympstone Manor vineyard.

To celebrate the launch, Michael will be hosting his annual Harvest Festival at Lympstone Manor on 4th October, inviting guests to be amongst the first to try the new Classic Cuvée. Guests will enjoy an afternoon at Lympstone Manor, with an al fresco 3 course lunch and a first tasting of the Classic Cuvée, Isabeau Rosé and the award-winning Triassic Pinot Noir. The sparkling wine will launch on the hotel’s wine list in October and will be available for retail purchase on the soon-to-launch dedicated Lympstone Manor Estate Wine website.

Lympstone Manor, the acclaimed luxury country house hotel on the banks of the Exe Estuary in East Devon, is Michael Caines’ flagship hotel and forms part of the Michael Caines Collection. Since opening six years ago, the manor house and fine dining restaurant has been transformed. Enhancements include an outdoor heated pool and pool house and six woodland-setting Shepherd Huts, in addition to the now established vineyard.

Triassic Pinot Noir and Classic Cuvée will both be available in Lympstone Manor’s Restaurant and Pool House Restaurant & Bar. To celebrate the launch, hotel guests can book Dinner, Bed and Breakfast with a 25% discount during October, November and December, enjoying a glass of Classic Cuvée on their first night. Restaurant guests can choose between three courses for £69.00 or four courses for £79.00 with a glass of the Classic Cuvée mid-week for lunch during October & November. Vineyard tours are available to guests and visitors every Wednesday between May and September and include a vineyard visit, tasting and a delicious four-course lunch.

Christopher Walkey

Co-founder of Glass of Bubbly. Journalist and author focused on Champagne & Sparkling Wines and pairing them with foods.