PUBLISHED: 09:00 10 February 2014
Whether you are a fruity Shiraz or a full-bodied Merlot, a Devon vineyard has come up with a novel evening for singles who share a love of fine wine. JAMES MILLAR reports
"Pebblebed’s Wine Dating events could help you find your very own Valentine"
This February, Pebblebed near Exeter, will be starting its ‘Wine Dating’ evenings; combining wine tasting and speed dating.
The concept is simple; singles looking for love and keen to sample some fine English wine, meet at the vineyard’s Cellar in Topsham, on the Exe estuary, where after each wine tasting they move around and talk to another date.
Vineyard owner, Geoff Bowen, explained: “What’s great about wine dating is it takes the pressure away from a normal speed dating evening.
“It gives people a topic to chat about and tends to attract like-minded individuals. And the conversation seems to start to flow after we’ve been through a few of the wines. We hosted a few evenings last year and they were a great success, so we are really keen to build on that success this year. What we really want is the first Pebblebed marriage.”
Lizzie Millar, 27, who came along to one of the events last year said: “I was a little anxious to start with, but after a few tastings I soon got into the night. I love the idea, it’s a really chilled and informal night and sampling the different wines gives you something to chat about with the other person. I made loads of new friends and even stayed on after the end of the tasting to relax in the bar”
Pebblebed was started 10 years ago by Geoff and a couple of friends who planted a few vines in a Devon field and has now grown into the largest vineyard in Devon producing red, white and rose wines; a sparkling white and a pink fizz which was named by Decanter magazine as one of the best in the world.
The first wine dating evening will be on Thursday, 13 February. Spaces are limited so visit www.pebblebed.co.uk to reserve a place (£15 for the wine tasting plus a light tapas meal). Tours of the vineyard are also available as a gift idea; see online.