If you are partial to the finer things in life, like beautiful architecture and sipping excellent wine, you may just find your own version of paradise right here, in the City of Bath. This vibrant destination, once a firm favourite of the 19th-century high society set, boasts elegant Georgian buildings that will take your breath away, sophisticated shopping and dining opportunities, and a variety of local vineyards and wine shops where a wine aficionado can indulge to their heart’s content.
Here are a few hotspots to visit if you simply cannot resist a tasty tipple or two:
Perched two miles to the east of Bath with a stunning, sweeping view of the Avon Valley, Mumfords is a family run, local business that is in the business of producing excellent English wine. The four-acre vineyard specialises in several varieties, so you can count on finding a flavour to suit. Perhaps one of their two whites, which include a light, fresh Madeleine Angevine and a blended medium dry, will tickle your fancy, or you might prefer the English red. Or, if you’re feeling adventurous, sample their outstanding, award-winning rosé.
Since Mumfords vineyard took root in the 80s, the name has become synonymous with fine wine in the industry – their wine was even served to the Queen during a visit to Bath in 2002. Group tours and wine tastings can be booked for £10 per head and bottles can be purchased from the vineyard, online or from a selection of local outlets.
Bath is a centre for artisan products, and Great Western Wine’s penchant for distinctive, hand-crafted specimens from all over the world means you can rely on this wine merchant to provide the sort of unique and individual experience that keeps in with the city’s ethos. The shop itself is located on the Wells Road and offers over 800 different bottles as well as a selection that are open for tasting – visitors are positively encouraged to browse, take their time and ask questions to the friendly staff. We are sure that with their advice, you will not be far off finding your perfect match.
Why not indulge your passion with a special learning experience, courtesy of The Great Wine School? In partnership with the aforementioned Great Western Wines as well as the sumptuous Allium Restaurant at the Abbey Hotel and swanky gastro pub The Chequers, wine professional Tristan Darby brings his 18 years of catering and wine experience to the table with a selection of imaginative courses and wine tasting experiences.
Events range from an evening of artisan and cheese and wine tasting to a full day introduction to wine to a food and wine matching workshop. So, there will be no chance of letting yourself down at your next dinner party.
One of Bath’s greatest charms is its close proximity to the beautiful countryside of the south west along with quaint, traditional market towns that make for an enjoyable day out. Quoins Organic Vineyard is located in one such town, and due to the nature of your trip, you may not want to drive to get here. Instead, the vineyard owners suggest hopping on the train that runs with convenient regularity from Bath, right into the heart of Bradford-on-Avon where the vineyard is based. Alternatively, if the weather is fine, you can jump off at Avoncliff and walk for an hour along wonderfully scenic countryside paths until you reach the vineyard where you can claim your reward.
Specialised tours and tastings are available for groups of 10 or more (inclusive of a welcome glass of wine) and you will have the opportunity to purchase a bottle or two at special farm-gate prices. Quoins is one of only seven commercially-producing organic vineyards in the country and offer the award-winning Orion and Madeleine Angevine whites, a couple of sensational Rondo reds and a rosé with a hint of wild strawberry.
Fine wine is one of the pleasures of life, and these experiences are just a few of the delights that life in Bath can offer.