Welcome to Yearlstone: Devon's Oldest Vineyard!
Roger and Juliet White,
owners of Yearlstone Vineyard.
Latitude 50 Degrees 42 Minutes - the Exe Valley lies on an almost
identical latitude with the Moselle Valley yet enjoys milder springs,
and milder autumns.
Steep and thickly wooded to the north as the River Exe runs off Exmoor,
by the time it reaches Bickleigh the Valley opens out into a broad river plain,
as the River runs down to the regional capital, Exeter,
and then the sea.
Our vineyard is on steep slopes around 200 feet above sea level,
looking down the river valley. With Red Devon sandstone breaking
up into shale, and hills on three sides, we have a natural amphitheatre
where light levels are high.
In summer, early morning mists rise up from the riverbed creating a
subtropical effect but burn off by midday.
Even in peak summer this part of mid-Devon is sleepy and quiet, apart
from the sounds of various birds of prey and corks popping in the
A perfect stopping off point on a long journey turning off the
motorway, Bickleigh itself is a noted beauty spot with thatched pubs on
the riverfront, although the best food and wine is on offer at the
Yearlstone Vineyard & Café OPEN Wed-Sundays 11-4 till Sunday 25th September,
then CLOSED from Monday 26th September
The Vineyard and the Café are
OPEN, 11am-4pm Wed-Sundays until Sunday 25th September.
we'll be closed from Monday 26th September until the Spring,
in order to allow some building works to take place.
After we close, visits by appointment may still be possible - please email
firstname.lastname@example.org to enquire.
don't forget our Online Sales page,
and our Many Stockists.
August 2016: News from the Vineyard
Rainfall in the Exe Valley was under an inch in June, same in July, and so far just over an inch in August.
The ground is dry and dusty and the crop is progressing quickly.
Not all varieties enjoyed the late cold spring, and there is a very light crop on the Pinots.
By contrast the Madeleines, Reichensteiners, Siegerrebe, Seyval and Rondo all look good.
We've had our problems in the vineyard, notably with our vintage vineyard tractor, DB 880, needing a new engine
(now back in service!).
As a result we missed a critical vineyard spray, and have suffered losses to powdery mildew in areas.
We are looking at around 6 tons of grapes - down from last 3 years, but sugar and ripeness levels look like being high.
New outlets include the wonderful Michelin starred Masons Arms at Knowstone, the Swan in Bampton
and North Devon's top seafood restaurant Fat Belly Freds in Barnstaple.
Plantings continue at a mad pace all over England as the wine boom of the last decade continues.
With Brexit, prices of European wines are going to get higher - so more reason to buy local!
Our 3 Food and Wine Club events this year, in May, June and July, went really well.
Yearlstone Number 5 dry white wine
won a bronze medal at the International Wine & Spirits Competition
in London in autumn 2015.
The Judges said: "White flowers with a fresh citrus vibrant finish. refreshing."
Getting to the Vineyard
Leave the M5 at Junction 27 - proceed along the link road to Tiverton.
Then follow the signs for the A396 Bickleigh/Exeter for about 3 miles,
then watch for the Vineyard brown tourist sign pointing up a hill.
Drive up the hill (Seven Crosses Road) for about a quarter mile,
bearing to the right at a junction, then 100 yards later on, turn
left into the access road for the vineyard. It's clearly marked
Yearlstone Vineyard. Follow on along, swoop down a concrete road,
then up to the vineyard carpark.
The following google map shows it nicely:
Our friend Markus Kinch of Film 41
has published several Yearlstone web movies on YouTube:
Click here for large-screen versions of all the Web Movies
including Yearlstone features on TV - visits from Oz Clarke, BBC Countryfile and BBC1's "The Great British Summer".
Roger On Twitter
Roger has been tweeting for a couple of years, here we are: