14/11/2019 by Great British Wine Shop 0 Comments
Camel Valley, Cornwall
When ex-RAF pilot Bob Lindo and his wife Annie planted their first eight thousand vines in 1989, they never dreamed of the phenomenal success they would achieve within 2 decades. They had bought their farm in the heart of the Cornish countryside several years earlier, seeking a change from service life and the perfect place to bring up their young family, and initially farmed sheep and cattle. Each summer they watched the grass turn brown on the sun-drenched slopes of the Camel Valley, and wondered if vines might enjoy such an aspect.
Bob ‘did a vintage' in Germany and both took viticulture courses and read every vine and wine book they could find. They built a winery and equipped it with the finest equipment they could afford. Annie is the first to admit the early years weren't easy: ‘We practically lived in the vineyard, doing all the work by hand, and when it came to harvest time it was just us and a few friends for picking, then Bob would stay up all night crushing the grapes. But we loved it, always striving for perfection in the vineyard and the winery, and then we won a medal in the national English Wine competition for our first wine, so we knew we were doing something right.'
More awards followed over the years, with Camel Valley wines consistently winning medals at both national and international level. In 2002 Bob and Annie won the Waitrose Drinks Producer of the Year Award, and the following year the South West Business Challenge award for Creating Wealth in the Rural Community. Bob continued as Winemaker, but now had a small team of full time staff to help in the vineyard and a new state of the art winery, and had started making Cornwall's first Traditional Method sparkling wine as well as still wines. His finest moment came in 2005 with an International Wine Challenge Gold Medal for Camel Valley ‘Cornwall' sparkling wine. ‘I was so proud to have won this, as our wine was up against the finest wines in the whole world and was the only gold medal awarded to a non-Champenoise wine. I really felt that I had set the standard for generations to come.'
National Champion Trophy for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships
Lifetime Achievement Award for Bob Lindo at the International Wine Challenge
Platinum, 97 points, for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the Decanter World Wine Awards
Gold for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the International Wine Challenge
Trophy for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the Wine GB Awards
Gold for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the Wine GB Awards
Gold for 2014 Camel Valley Cornwall Brut at the Wine GB Awards
‘Best managed Small Business’ Trophy for 2017 Camel Valley Vineyard at the Cornwall Sustainability Awards
Silver for 2014 Camel Valley Cornwall Brut at the Decanter World Wine Awards
Silver for 2014 White Pinot Noir at the International Wine Challenge
Silver for 2015 Curvée Raymond Blanc at the International Wine Challenge
Gold for 2015 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rosé Brut at the Champagne and Sparkling Wine World Championships
Silver for 2016 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Rose Brut at the International Wine Challenge
Silver for 2014 Camel Valley Pinot Noir Brut at the International Wine Challenge
Silver for 2015 Camel Valley Classic Cuvee at the International Wine Challenge
Silver for 2014 Camel Valley Darnibole Brut at the International Wine Challenge
First & only vineyard to receive by Appointment HRH status