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Chapel Down cracking America after winning trophy at the USA’s Ultimate Wine Challenge

A winemaker has been honoured at the USA’s Ultimate Wine Challenge less than a year after launching across the pond.

Chapel Down was awarded the Chairman’s Trophy for its Three Graces 2010, which the judges declared “gives many champagnes a run for their money”.

It is the first time an English sparkling wine has been awarded a trophy at the event, now in its seventh year.

Chapel Down is stocked in Marks & Spencer, Waitrose, Sainsbury, Tesco and Majestic
Chapel Down is stocked in Marks & Spencer, Waitrose, Sainsbury, Tesco and Majestic

It is also a significant milestone a market which is the world's largest consumer of wine, with annual sales of close to $35 billion, according to US winery association WineAmerica.

Tenterden-based Chapel Down launched in New York in October and has extended its distribution Massachusetts, Connecticut and Pennsylvania.

The company, which supplied bubbly to the wedding of the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge, has plans to extend to the West Coast and South of the country later this year.

Some of the finest restaurants in New York sell the Kentish fizz, including the Shakespeare at The William Hotel, Jones Wood Foundry and the Grand Central Oyster Bar.

The vineyard at Chapel Down
The vineyard at Chapel Down

Its Classic Non-Vintage Brut was also “highly recommended” in the competition.

Arnaud Brachet, president luxury wine and spirits company ABCK Corp, which is marketing the wine in the US, said: “We are delighted to be working with Chapel Down and this latest accolade is another testament to its world-class quality.”

The winemaker’s managing director Mark Harvey said: “We have been thrilled by the positive response to English sparkling wine in the US and this prestigious accolade adds to the sense of opportunity and excitement Stateside. This is only the beginning.”

The company, which also has vineyards in Kits Coty and the Weald, also exports to cities like Paris, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Tokyo, Singapore, Copenhagen and Helsinki.

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