OUR BUILD: OPENING A CELLAR DOOR
How did our Cellar Door journey begin? When our parent company, Boutinot, helped us expand our winery, we were able to double our production capacity. Rather than the 150,000 bottles of wine we were capable of processing last year, this year and going forward, we’re all set up to create 300,000 bottles if necessary. Fingers crossed for that sunshine and some fabulous years for grape-growing ahead, and they’ll all be full by next harvest!
But doubling our winery capacity didn’t just give us space for the team to operate. It also allowed us a little corner to build up as a Cellar Door - a shop and a tasting room from which to sell wine, run tours and tastings, and host events. Henners has never been open to the public before in our long history, so since 2007 we’ve had relatively few people through our doors. All that is changing in 2022, and even for Christmas 2021!
My name is Rebecca, and my role has been growing alongside the new building this year. I’ll be telling you lots about our story on these blogs, and in our tours throughout the year as well. When I came to talk to Henners about opening a Cellar Door here, there wasn’t even the barn that you see today when you come and visit us - they’d barely poured the concrete! By the time I was up at Boutinot, learning the ropes, we had our fabulous and shiny new tanks arriving, the largest of which is 10,000 Litres! Imagine how much wine that is!
I’ve seen Henners grow and expand, and by the time I’m writing this the building is up, the furniture is coming out of its boxes, and the finishings are getting their final polish. Watching our little Cellar Door become a reality has been an amazing part of 2021, and I can’t wait to show everyone around it. Although we’ll still be a little ‘rough and ready’, we’ll be opening to the public for the very first time on November 27th for our first annual Christmas Fair.
If you want to see the build in action, you should check out the highlight reel on our Instagram, where you can watch each stage of the build, inside and out. In the meantime, I’d love to hear what you think of our brand new building, so do come and visit us, ask lots of questions, and of course, take lots of pictures too!
Our Cellar Door isn’t just about allowing people a sneak peak into our previously pretty private winery and vineyard grounds. It’s also about local community, sustainability, and building up eco-tourism in Sussex and beyond. I’ll be blogging a lot about all these, especially sustainability: as founder members of Sustainable Wines of Great Britain, we are so proud that our winery and vineyard are both audited and certified sustainable, and our Cellar Door follows exactly the same ethos, with electric charging in the car park and a water butt to reduce our water footprint. Plenty more on that coming up soon...!
See you at the Cellar Door,