HUNDREDS of wine makers and visitors from around the world attended the first-ever Dorset Wine Festival last weekend.

The inaugural event at 10 Castle Street, Cranborne, featured wines from all corners of the globe as well as closer to home including producers of English Sparkling at Lytchett Matravers.

Throughout the day there were a number of talks from wine and food experts, as well as live music by bands the Mother Ukers and Lyla & John, an art gallery set up by Ambassadeur Art and painting workshops for children.

Alex Boon, festival director, said: “ We have been delighted with this year’s festival and want to thank everyone who came and supported us.

"The English Sparkling section was, of course, extremely popular and we certainly want to grow this and invite more producers in 2018.

"The talk on organic, bio-dynamic and natural wines from author Jane Anson was also an eye-opener for many who had never really experienced these wines before and Charlie Turnbull sharing his knowledge, and samples, of cheese and wine tasting was a real hit."

Mr Boon added: "The highlight for us was securing Damian Barton, an eighth generation wine maker from Bordeaux. It was a real coup and made us realise how different the Dorset Wine Festival is to many others on offer. You get to meet face-to-face with the wine makers, growers and producers not the marketing and sales department.

"These people are hands-on with their grapes, and in Damian’s case are producing some of the finest wine on the planet. We believe what we have created here is very special and we have set the bar for next year’s festival."

Francois Bannier, a wine maker from Hecht & Bannier in Provence, said: “Beautiful settings, wonderful place and great people. It was good to show my wines there and network with other producers. I specialise making crémant & rosé so also really enjoyed tasting the English Sparkling, which I thought are very impressive. ”

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