In the early years Breaky Bottom earned a reputation for still Loire-style wines from the Seyval Blanc grape. Now I produce only sparkling wines following the Méthode Champenoise. Seyval Blanc is still the principal variety but now I also grow Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier.
I make two cuvées each year and age them in bottle for at least four years. Compared to most wineries, my production is very modest. Less than 10,000 bottles of each cuvée are made. At release, I dedicate every wine to the memory of a close friend or relative. Five wines are currently available:
2009 Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier
Cuvée Gerard Hoffnung
Gerard was a great family friend, an artist, cartoonist, musician, humourist and broadcaster; a constant visitor to our London home during my childhood.
6,384 bottles produced.
2010 Seyval Blanc
Cuvée Koizumi Yakumo
My great-great uncle Lafcadio Hearn / Koizumi Yakumo (1850-1904) was a brilliant travel writer of Greek/Anglo-Irish parents and is still hugely respected in Japan.
8,301 bottles produced.
2010 Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier
Cuvée Reynolds Stone
Reynolds Stone, the famous wood engraver and letter cutter, was the designer of the original Breaky Bottom label. Reynolds Stone’s work included wood engraving the royal coat of arms for the British Passport, several engravings for five and ten pound notes and the “Dove of Peace” which was commissioned for the “Victory” stamp in 1946.
6,154 bottles produced.
2013 Seyval Blanc
Cuvée Sir Harry Kroto
Harry Kroto was a dear friend: a brilliant scientist, educator, artist and wine-lover who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Chemistry in 1996. He lived in Lewes and died in April 2016.
8,868 bottles produced.
2013 Chardonnay, Seyval Blanc, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier
Cuvée Cornelis Hendriksen
Dear friend Cornelis Hendriksen was a dynamic doctor, originally from the Netherlands, a traveller worldwide in the Far East and Australia; a collector of ancient artefacts and a caring medic reaching inaccessible places; a real adventurer.
6,743 bottles produced.