‘In the wine industry, we talk about the climate, we talk about the terroir, we talk about the science but the people are the most important thing. So this symposium is the best chance for you to come to meet with the top scientists and to communicate with the whole society of the cool climate production region’ Professor Huiquin Ma, University of Beijing
With tickets selling well and the programme all but finalised, leading lights of the UK industry joined members of the media and ICCWS sponsors and patrons at the third Patrons’ Circle reception.
Keynote speaker Oz Clarke joined Plumpton College’s Chris Foss, programme committee chair, himself one of the winning bid team, and a host of others, including EWP’s Communicator of the Year, Peter Richards MW, Jo Cowderoy, general secretary of theUK Vineyard Association, and Barry Lewis in his first official engagement as the Association’s new CEO.
Hosted by Liberty Wines, one of the symposium’s original patrons, guests were treated to still and sparkling wines from patrons and sponsors, including a selection from Germany and a dramatic magnum from Nutbourne.
On behalf of the ICCWS, Justin Howard-Sneyd MW, member of the sponsorship and marketing committee and one of the original winning bid trio, welcomed new patrons Vine Works, Blacksquare, Three Choirs and Exton Park and Wine Marlborough on board, along with new sponsors Bolney Estate and Agrothermal Systems from California.
Conversation centred on the symposium itself. “The heavy-hitting programme is peppered with interesting things,” said Howard-Sneyd. ‘The problem will be deciding which sessions to go to! I am particularly intrigued to hear what Professor Huiquin Ma has to tell us about viticulture in China’s more marginal climates, and very interested to find out which wines Essi Avellan MW and Oz Clarke will choose for their tastings showcasing English Sparkling Wines and Still Wines respectively.”
Huiquin Ma joined the reception via video, stressing the importance of the chance to meet people from across the whole gamut of the globe’s cool climate regions. “This maybe a once in a lifetime chance,” said Dr Hans Schultz, president of the University of Geisenheim, who will be leading the session on Emerging Cool Climate Regions.
“We have 35 guest speakers, 50 delegate speakers and 30 poster presenters at the moment,” confirmed Foss, explaining that poster applications were still being accepted.
With 300 tickets sold, for the success of the conference “We won’t be happy until we have passed the 400 mark,” said Howard-Sneyd. As well as three-day and one-day conference tickets, social event tickets are also now available online, including the Gala Dinner on Friday 27 May, a steal at £65, and Laithwaite’s tantalising Cool Wine Show on Saturday 28 May
England in the spotlight
Those visiting from overseas will “Receive a good insight into how the English wine industry in the last decade has really upped its game to produce world class wines,” said Lewis.
“There’s such a hunger for knowledge about these wines,” agreed Richards, relating the “genuine fascination” with English wines shown on his recent trip to South America.
“This is the chance for the English wine industry to come of age,” said Martin Fowke, winemaker at Three Choirs Vineyard. “It’s not often you get the chance to witness such an evolution unfolding before your eyes,” added Richards. “It’s something that we can be proud of.”
What you can do
- Find out what Huiquin Ma, Oz Clarke and a selection of the other keynote speakers are most looking forward to here [LINK TO VIDEO COMPILATION]
- Buy your tickets while stocks last, and book your social events now.
- Decide which sessions you wish to attend.
- Spread the word to your colleagues.