New Waltham farm produces range of home-grown wines
BERRY growers have the perfect tonic for a wet summer.
They have harvested berries from crops spread over 10 acres at Peaks Top Farm, New Waltham, to produce sensational wines.
The Fabulously Fruity range will no doubt tempt adults taking children to pick berries at the farm.
As well as selling home-grown strawberries, raspberries or gooseberries, visitors can now sample the new wines made on site.
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There is also a tasty range of honey thanks to the dozens of hives run by producer Steve Eddowes and his friends.
He has helped the farm owners with the delicious diversification into wine-making.
Some of last year's bumper crop was frozen to reap a harvest of fine wines in varieties including strawberry, raspberry, bramble, apple and blackcurrant.
There are also wines in gooseberry and red gooseberry, rosehip and elderflower.
Each is priced at £7.95 per bottle. Owner Peter Clayton, of W Clayton and Sons, said: "Each is hand-crafted in the traditional style to retain the bouquet of freshly-picked fruit.
"The beauty of them is they come with absolutely zero food miles because everything is grown and made on the farm."
The farm, which has been growing berries for more than 30 years, has become fully licensed to produce wine commercially.
Mr Clayton said there had been a good response from customers to the wine, which is a collaboration with Mr Eddowes and his friends.
He has invited visitors to attend the regular wine-tasting events during the summer. On Saturday, there will be a session between 2pm and 4pm.
Mr Eddowes, who looks after about 40 hives on the farm, said: "There is no real secret; it is all natural.
"I started doing the wine at home with about 3lbs of fruit and 3lb of sugar a bit of yeast and let it ferment – all totally natural."
He said the bees were invaluable to the production of the berries and ultimately the wine. The farm, which is off Hewitt's Avenue and is open from 10am to 5pm, also sells eggs.
Donations will also be received for the Women's Aid Refuge appeal.