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World

Don't underestimate British bubbly

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Opening sequence

World

Don't underestimate British bubbly

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COMING UP:Don't underestimate British bubbly

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00:00:01
>> Don't underestimate Britain's bubbles, UK's sparkling wines sales hitting an all-time high this summer as demand soars at home and abroad. English sparkling wines can't be called champagne because there's an EU law that protects that name. But it doesn't seem to be much of a problem. It recently beat Champagne at a blind tasting in Paris and sales of Champagne alternatives like Prosecco and Cava are booming in supermarkets here.
00:00:28
I'm Reuters reporter Rosanna Philpott amid some of the vines that started the trend. In 2010, Richview Vineyard won top sparkling wine at the prestigious Decanter Awards, the first ever non French wine to do so. That put England's wine industry firmly on the map. Now, some experts say climate change is making southern England more suitable for growing quality wine.
00:00:52
But Ridgeview's founder says the growing conditions have always been there. It's just attitudes and interests that's changed.>> It's been a huge journey. So when we first started it was very difficult to get people to try English wine. Whereas now, you walk into a wine shop or a restaurant and you will see an English wine on that menu or on that shelf.
00:01:13
People do, they actually care now where things come from. The more local a product can be, the more they want it.>> And it's not just the locals with a thirst for English tipples, wine exports are expected to increases from 3.2 million pounds last year to over 30 million in 2020.
00:01:31
And French firm Taittinger has recently invested in land here. The future of British wine will also depend in part on what happens with Brexit trade agreements. The chardonnay grapes on Richview's vines today will hit shelves as wine in two or three years. Before they ripen it's up to prime minister Theresa May to negotiate a new deal for the country.
00:01:52
If she succeeds, winemakers here will be sure to raise a glass.