It’s the innovative and passionate team at Hattingley Valley that helps create a truly unique range of English quality sparkling wines. Our traditional method sparkling wines made from grapes grown on chalk soils deliver a quintessentially English countryside vibrancy that is created for your enjoyment. Our subtle use of oak barrels to ferment a small proportion of the wines helps soften the wines before they go into bottle for secondary fermentation.
Simon Robinson is the Founder and Owner of Hattingley Valley Wines in Hampshire and also Chairman of WineGB – the leading national trade association for grape-growers and winemakers in the UK.
Hampshire resident, Simon was a senior partner at city law firm Slaughter and May for 24 years, before planting his first vines. He called on the talents of Plumpton-trained winemaker Emma Rice to help start the vineyard in 2008. In 2010, the eco-friendly winery was completed, and the first vintage bottled, which was then released in 2013. Following which, Simon finally quit his day job to pursue his winemaking dream full time.
As well as supplying the on and off trade in the UK, Simon has targeted new markets and Hattingley now exports a third of its wine around the globe, with the largest overseas markets being the US, Norway, Australia and Japan.
Hattingley Valley has quickly established itself as one of the UK’s most successful wineries, winning over 79 medals, 13 trophies, and three Best in Class for its English sparkling wines. It is recognised for its innovative and dynamic approach to winemaking, with award-winning English sparkling wines enjoyed throughout the UK and exported internationally to 16 countries.
Before joining Hattingley Valley in 2008, Head Winemaker Emma Rice (twice winner of the UK Winemaker of the Year award, in 2014 and 2016) had an impressive career in the wine trade.
Emma’s passion for wine started, aged 19, with a taste of Krug 1979 from a double magnum, whilst working part-time at The White Horse Inn, Chilgrove. From there, she took a job at Oddbins before moving onto Burgundy importer and wine merchant, Domaine Direct. This led to her becoming editor of the highly regarded Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book for three years.
At the age of 29, already with substantial wine knowledge and experience under her belt, and having completed the WSET Diploma in 2003, Emma decided to study viticulture and oenology at Plumpton College. Throughout her studies she continued to work as a freelance wine editor as well as in the vineyard at Nyetimber and various independent wine shops in Brighton.
After graduating in 2006, Emma travelled to Napa Valley in California for the harvest, where she stayed for nearly two years as oenologist and laboratory manager at Cuvaison Estate Wines. Following this she completed a cool climate vintage at Tamar Ridge in Tasmania, before moving back to the UK and setting up Custom Crush UK Ltd – a wine analysis laboratory and consultancy - through which she met Owner and Chairman of Hattingley Valley Wines, Simon Robinson, just as he had planted his vines.
Today, Emma’s role as Head Winemaker at Hattingley Valley is varied – she oversees the development of the vineyards, including producing Hattingley’s signature wines, manages the growing winemaking team and, as a director of Hattingley Valley, is involved in running the business at board level.
Born just twenty miles from Hattingley, the wine trade was in Gareth’s blood from an early age – his father was in the industry and credited as being amongst the first to import New World wines to the UK. Gareth began his career in hospitality at the age of 15 as a busboy in an American diner and cocktail bar and spent the next 11 years in the sector. He moved into the wine world when he joined the highly regarded UK wine distributor, Ellis Wines (formally Ellis of Richmond), in 2008 before arriving at Hattingley Valley in 2015.
As Commercial Director of Hattingley Valley Wines, is responsible for all sales and exports, whether that’s securing on-and-off trade UK accounts, broking deals with the US or placing the vineyard’s English sparkling wine in Norway.
Gareth works closely with the team to spread the word about Hattingley Valley. He is responsible for the winery's distribution model and developing strong ties with international markets, placing Hattingley at the forefront of the English sparkling wine scene to buyers and wholesalers domestically and around world.
Alongside his work at Hattingley, Gareth serves as Chairman of the WineGB Export Committee.