|Arbury Hall (entrance view)|
|Front of Arbury Hall|
As well as being a stunning stately home Arbury is also famous for being used in many of George Eliot's novels. Mary Ann Evans (George Eliot was her pen name as women could not publish works) lived on the estate as her father was the estate agent. Cheverel Manor in Scenes of a Clerical Life is Arbury Hall and George Eliot describes it as 'growing from ugliness into beauty' a description derived from the house's transformation.
The gardens are as stunning as the house - so tranquil and peaceful. The best time to visit is spring or early summer when all the rhododendrons are in flower.
|The Round Towers (gateway to Arbury Estate)|
|The wing where the family now live|
|Stable Block which now houses the cafe|
|Arbury Hall entrance|
|Rebuilt Roman Villa|
The tour continued at the top of the vineyard amongst the vines, namely Madeline Angevine. Martin's passion and knowledge (his father planted the vineyard and he has always worked on the land) was evident in his explanation of planting, pruning and picking. Moving nearer the buildings Martin described how he used nature to tell when the grapes are ready to pick - by checking the badger droppings!!
|Rows of vines with the Villa in the distance|
Noble Roman: a crystal clear very pale white wine with a light slightly floral nose with a hint of citrus. A medium bodied wine leaving a long finish - neither too sweet or to dry this wine could accompany most light dishes.
Regner: An even paler white in the colour, very clear with a nose of floral perfume. A little dryer with a shorter length to it's finish. A crisp wine suited to fish dishes.
Shropshire Gold: A medium bodied wine slightly sweeter than the first two. A light nose of grapefruit and a soft citrus palate with a touch of pear. A wine suited to drinking unaccompanied or as an aperitif.
Emily Rose: This wine was named after Martin's daughter and has a light strawberry colour with a sparkly hue. A dry finish with slight tannins - soft fruit flavours making this an easy drinking rose.
Shropshire Red: A very cherry red in colour, the highest alcohol content with a nose of cherry and slight oak. Fairly light in body, some tannin but with more fruit and a smoothness to its finish.
The Tour and Tasting was full of information about wine and the surrounding area. Our day continued as we had also booked lunch, a super game pie with new potatoes, salad and coleslaw followed by either carrot cake or blackforest gateau. With lunch we had two more wine tastings:
Roman Red: A deep claret colour with a redcurrant and hedgerow nose. It was a dry wine with plenty of redcurrants, a little tannic with a medium length to its finish.
Madeline Angevine: A white wine with a golden yellow colour and a quince nose. A lovely crisp wine with an apply palate. Nice and crisp with a medium finish, this was my favourite wine.
|Our complimentary wine to bring home.|