15 September, 2009

Denbies 3D Cinema and Wine Tasting

Denbies Entrance
So after finishing our rather bumpy ride (although tiny Thomas didn't seem to care) around the hills of the Denbies estate on the "land train", we pushed our joints back into place and wandered back into the main building to join the queue standing at the little clock announcing the time of the next wine tasting tour, starting with the 3D Cinema experience (oooh!)...
Denbies 3d cinema
There were actually a couple of different options (varying in price) for doing the tour, the most expensive of which included some canapes to eat while you sipped, but we went for the cheaper version...all of them include all the various parts of the tour, it's just what you eat or drink at the end that depends how hard it hits the wallet (and actually, none of them were over £20)...

The cinema was actually quite clever, a ring of projectors beam a (pretty seamless) series of video clips, during which you can crane your head (or even walk around) to see in 360 degrees as tractors drive between the vines, or dangle from the bottom of a helicopter as it flies over the Surrey Hills (all very clever)...
Denbies 3d cinema
...and not wishing to spoil the experience, the presentation mostly harps on about how similar conditions in Dorking are to the Champagne region in France and how grumpy they are that they can't call their sparkling wine by the French name (even though increasing amounts of grapes used to make the French version are being grown in England and shipped over there for brewing and bottling, as global warming starts to strike - a rather cheeky development, but where would we be without Champagne)...?

The highlight of this section (and to experience it you will need to stand around the outside - those seated in the middle felt nothing) was when the video showed lots of corks being popped and tiny spray guns go off all around the room showering everyone's necks with chilled water...I found that very amusing... ;)

Next, some doors on the far side of the cinema are opened, and beyond a series of wooden carriages are waiting -
Denbies Wine Tour
- which take you on an *extremely* short trip around the factory floor -
Denbies Wine Tour
- in our case past all the workers busily completely ignoring the wine making facilities, just putting together hundreds of Lego Bricks -
Denbies Wine Tour - Lego House Roof
- including sections of the (yet to be assembled) roof...
Denbies Wine Tour
Then it was down into the cellar (a bit of a "Was that it?" sort of ride) -
Denbies Wine Tour
- where they keep the barrels carved from the oak trees that fell down during the Great Storm of 1987 (perfectly useless for keeping wine as English Oak doesn't allow anything stored inside to breathe, but a nice addition to the decor)...
Denbies Wine Tour
We tried three wines, each grape from each one was pointed out to us on the campaign map on the wall, and actually, each one was jolly nice, dry (as English wines are apt to be) but then that suits me perfectly (not having much of a sweet tooth)... ;)

So all in all, a very enjoyable day, discovered that English wines are only going to get better as global warming turns the South of England into Northern France, and that the French are already panicking and bulk buying Kent...Cheers! ;)

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I very much enjoyed my birthday treat and I am so pleased we have got to visit denbies...thankyou so much luv from Nanjan xx