Easter Update from the vines

Easter-vineyard-update

As we head into The Easter Weekend, we thought it was about time for a vineyard update!

We’re not sure how it’s the Easter Weekend already – it’s as though we blinked at Christmas and suddenly the sun is starting to feel warmer, the daffodils are out and we’re feeling rather excited for a (fingers crossed) glorious summer. 

So, what have we been up to? Catch up with our winemaker Tom in his video update or read the full details below.

We’ve been delighted to see the café so busy over the long, and ridiculously wet, winter. And whilst it’s great to see the rain, as the fields certainly needed it, we are now keeping our fingers firmly crossed for some nicer, drier weather to take us into summer. Pruning is almost finished and as the weather warms slightly, the vines become more flexible, ready for us to position the vines ready to see spring, and more importantly buds start growing on the vines. 

Mike has been out in the cold, wet and windy weather all winter ensuring the vines are happy and healthy ready for another season. He’s been ticking off maintenance jobs such as replacing posts and trellising as well as planning preparations for our latest expansion of the vineyard. In late May we are expecting 1700 new vines to be planted at the very top end of the vineyard, looking down across the valley. The new vines will be more Rondo, which by the time they are established and ready to produce a crop, will be a welcome addition in helping us create more of our rosé. 

Mike and Sarah have also recently moved to the vineyard itself from their old house just a few minutes up the road. Being on site is going to be hugely important as they will be on hand immediately when it comes to frosty nights. With the warmest February on record being earlier this year, and the wet, warm ground, it seems as though our vines are on the edge of bursting into life. This means for the next six weeks or so, we are going to be on high alert, ready to act if the temperatures drop below freezing. Vines are more than happy being in sub-zero conditions during the winter when they are dormant. However, once they start producing buds or leaves they are extremely vulnerable to cold temperatures. If you’ve been on a tour with us before, you will remember finding out about how we protect the vines with ‘Bougies’ – giant candles that stir the air and prevent air frosts, in order to protect the vines. You can read more about that here. We are keeping our fingers crossed that mother nature is in a good mood and looks after us this year! 

easter update - pruning

In the winery, I have been busy nurturing our latest vintage, harvested in 2023. With such a large, record-breaking crop, the winery is full to the brim and we expect around 15,000 bottles to be produced. Orders are being placed for bottles and caps, and final filtering is expected to begin very soon, ready for bottling as the warmer weather approaches. 

BLOG copy 02 50

In the café things are getting very exciting ahead of the summer! We’ve had the first two of a fantastic line-up of ‘Live in the Vines’ acts already and can’t wait to see more as the year goes on. We have Alex Hart joining us this weekend to perform for a fully booked audience. 

We have been blessed with some amazing awards recently too, for which we are incredibly grateful. We are still in shock to have received a gold for café/tearoom of the year in the South West Tourism Excellence Awards a few weeks ago. Thank you to everyone who emailed, messaged or commented on a social post, we are really feeling the love! 

We are also busy upgrading our terrace area, in the hope that this summer is going to be beautifully sunny so we can take full advantage of the weather. We have replaced our old picnic benches with fantastic, super comfortable new ones, complete with back rests. Adam, Lauryn and Heather, our amazing kitchen team are busy finalising the new menu as we speak, which is sounding fantastic and making us all very hungry, all the time. 

We have lots more exciting things under our hat to be announced very soon as we head into summer. To keep up to date with news, events and to receive discounts, don’t forget to join our mailing list below.

Tom Hodgetts

Tom Hodgetts

Head wine wizard
Share on...

join our vine club

Scroll to Top

Opening times

9-5pm wed-sun

Christmas opening times

10-4pm BANK HOLIDAYS

Welcome to the club!

We are so glad you decided to join us. We have just sent you an email to confirm your email address then you’ll be a fully-fledged member of our Vine Club.

Large table bookings

As a small team prided on serving freshly cooked plates we have a few restrictions when it comes to larger groups detailed below:

Please note a £10pp charge against a credit/debit card is required to book a table of 8+. No charge is taken unless you don’t show up on the day or cancel without 48hrs notice.

Tables 8-12 people – A pre-order (with allergy information) from our menus (click here) is required at least 1 week before your booking.

Tables 12-40 people – We can only serve our signature sharing platters for groups over 12. Please see our lunch menu (click here) to see our current platter range. A pre-order (with allergy information) is required at least 1 week before your booking.

Delivery costs

STANDARD (3-4 days*)

PREMIUM (1-2 days*)

*Please note days refers to our working days Tue-Sat. As we are closed every Monday. 

Alcohol Awareness

We love wine here at Alder Vineyard but it’s useful to remember that wine is of course an alcoholic product. Whilst wine can be enjoyed in moderation, it is important to seek help and advice if you think you, or a loved one is drinking too much. 

You must be 18 or over to purchase wine and other alcoholic products. 

Our Kitchen is well stocked with drinks from across Devon and beyond and proudly includes several non-alcoholic options. This includes non-alcoholic beers, gin-alternatives, mocktails and of course, soft drinks. 

If you think you, or a loved one may need help and support due to alcohol misuse, please use the links below to find incredibly useful charities and resources that can help you. 

Sustainability Statement

We are proudly committed to protecting our environment and the planet in any way we possibly can. Our ethical and sustainable practices are at the heart of what we do here. 

What have we done so far?

  • Introduction of ‘wild areas’. The garden of the Kitchen includes our gorgeous wildflower area that is ever-changing and evolving. We have also set aside a huge area of land below the vineyard which has become our nature haven. We are allowing mother nature to repossess this area, surrounding a beautiful stream. Encouraging wildflowers and native species to thrive on our vineyard land. 
  • 100% of our power comes from renewable provider Octopus, powering the Kitchen, winery and shop. We also use energy-saving light bulbs and other techniques to reduce our uses wherever possible. 
  • We source products and ingredients from countless local suppliers, reducing food miles and supporting other local businesses. 
  • We send no waste to landfill. 100% of our waste is recycled, reused, composted or used to make energy via DCW 
  • We harness a natural spring on the farm to provide water for tasks such as washing vehicles, vineyard work, watering plants and flower beds. We only use mains water for use in the kitchen and winery. 
  • Our own products are bottled in lightweight glass and aluminium caps, meaning our bottles are created, transported and recycled with minimal energy use. 
  • Our entire range is packaged in plastic-free shipping boxes and is delivered to the customer by our courier, APC who use modern, aero-dynamic, fuel-efficient vehicles that are regularly maintained and serviced to reduce carbon emissions. 
  • We promote the use of plastic-free packaging to our suppliers.
  • We employ a wonderful team of local people. Where possible we encourage car sharing, travelling by bike or electric vehicle. 

 

What else do we aim to do in the future:

  • Our goal is to add solar panels and batteries to our building to remove or reduce the need for power to be brought in from elsewhere. 
  • Another mission is always reducing our requirement for the use of chemicals in the vineyard. We have always refused to use insecticides, however we would like to focus on reducing the use of other sprays wherever possible in the near future whilst making use of ever evolving organic alternatives. 
  • We will be partnering with other local companies who can make use of our harvest waste. For example, our red grape skins will be used to make ‘Grappa’ for the first time in 2023.

Accessibility information

This guide is designed to make your visit as fantastic as possible and to give you the opportunity to let us know where and when we can help you with specific needs. 

Our entire building is wheelchair friendly and we will always endeavour to cater for any specific need or requirement. 

If there is anything we can do that is not mentioned in this guide, please do let us know by emailing hello@aldervineyard.uk or calling 01566783409 ahead of your visit. 

 

Level Access:

  • Our entire building is on one level, meaning you can get around easily with a wheelchair. 
  • You can park directly in front of the building entrance, on a flat paved area. From here you can access the café, our unisex accessible toilets, outside terrace, and the winery. 
  • Please note: If you are joining us for a tour, this does involve a walk around the vineyard which is unfortunately not wheelchair friendly. Due to the terrain of the vineyard, a steep hill and lack of hard walkways this is not suitable for wheelchair users or those who struggle to walk. For more information, or to discuss joining a tour which can be adapted to be accessible please email tom@aldervineyard.uk. We will endeavour to adapt the tour to suit your individual needs where possible. 

 

Hearing:

  • Our café is a modern space designed for the very best social eating experiences. 
  • We have a fantastic, self-made, playlist of music to provide a relaxed atmosphere whilst not being imposing as you are eating. However we understand that might not be ideal for some. Each speaker in the ceiling is individually controlled and can be turned off to make a specific area quieter. Please just let us know when booking if you prefer a quiet space and we can choose a table more suited to this and turn the music off in that area. 
  • We have invested in large, padded photographs for the café walls which are actually sound buffering panels in disguise. This, along with our chair socks reduces the sound in the café as well. 
  • There are no speakers outside, however the outside area is not covered so we cant guarantee this will be suitable on wet/cold/windy days. 
  • All of our team are trained to be able to help you as much as we possibly can. 

 

Visual

  • Our café is designed around full height windows and have dark grey frames to make them stand out as much as possible.
  • The walls and doors have high colour contrast.
  • Our team would be more than happy to read the menu to you if you have vision problems as well as answer any questions you may have. 

 

General

  • We have a complimentary ticket system for personal assistants or carers. 
  • Our whole team has been trained to help in any way possible to ensure the best experience. 
  • We have an emergency evacuation protocol in place for disabled visitors. 

We have your Booking!

We will check our availability and be in touch soon to discuss your private group tour booking via email. 

We have your Booking!

We will check our availability and be in-touch soon to confirm your table via email.

We are Covid secure

Yours and our teams safety is our number 1 priority. We have made a number of changes in the vines to keep us all safe. This is under constant review and will be updated when the government advice changes.

safe travels

We have been verified by Visit England as ‘Good to go’

Social distancing

Please keep to a 2m distance when you visit. We have set all our tables at least 1.5m apart and do recommend face coverings in all indoor areas. Our team will still be wearing face covering when around you too.

Tables size limits

To continue to keep us safe in the vines we are keeping our tables limited to 10 people. We can accommodate larger groups but please get in touch to discuss any 10+ bookings with us.

Hand washing & cleaning

We have introduced a number of hand cleaning stations and guests are required to use hand sanatisor on entry. Our team are washing their hands between each customer and we are disinfecting all tables and chairs between use.

Payment

We are offering table service in the kitchen and advice using contactless or card payments where possible.

We have your Booking!

We will check our availability and be in-touch soon to confirm your table via email.

Booking for today?
Please call us on 01566 783 409 as we may not get to your email in time. 

We have your entry!

We’ve got our fingers crossed for you. We will send you an email to confirm your entry and we will be back in touch once the competition closes. Good luck!

By using our site you are accepting our cookies. We use cookies to help our site tingle your visual taste buds! Find out more