British made wine

Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

British made wine, a curious alcoholic drink made in the image of wine from ingredients, often grape concentrate, imported into Great Britain. It is known as made wine, and a decidedly manufactured product it is. Concentrated grape must, the consistency of thin honey, is imported in bulk throughout the year from wherever happens to be able to supply the best value (Spain was a notable source in the early 21st century). The must is reconstituted by adding water and is fermented using selected yeast strains, under the most rigorous technical controls, according to the wine style required. Until the 1980s, almost all British wine produced was fortified, and made to resemble sherry or port, or flavoured with ginger or other spices or fruits. Since the early 1980s, British wines of normal table wine strength have also been made, much to the dismay of the producers of English wine (see england), with whose products made from freshly picked grapes there is considerable confusion.