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Introduction to Greyfriars

Greyfriars was one of the first vineyards in England to plant the classic Champagne grape varieties (Pinot Noir and Chardonnay) in 1989. The original planting was on a ‘hobby’ scale of one and a half acres on the south facing chalk slopes of the Hog’s Back (the North Downs) located a few miles outside Guildford in Surrey. Mike and Hilary Wagstaff, the current owners, took over Greyfriars in 2010 with the aim of expanding the vineyard to become a commercial scale producer of quality sparkling wine reflecting the unique local geology, climate and heritage of the Surrey North Downs.

Since then they have expanded the business to a total of 50 acres under vines on three sites. The 2017 harvest produced 120 tonnes of grapes and they bottled over 70,000 bottles last year. Greyfriars also now has a state of the art winery and has just completed digging a 3,500 sq. ft storage ‘cave’ in the chalk slopes of the Hog’s Back.

The company released tiny volumes of its two first ‘signature’ wines in 2013 and 2014 (Sparkling Rose Reserve and Blanc de Blancs) from the 2011 and 2012 vintages. The 2013 vintage represented the first crop from new plantings which has allowed them to expand our range of wines in 2016 as well as give sufficient volume of wine to expand distribution. The wines are now available from an ever increasing number of stockists or direct from the Greyfriars shop or online via

What Others Have Said About Us

Oz Clarke. (Oz’s Wines for Easter 11th April 2017) “Greyfriars Blanc de Blancs, Brut, England. Greyfriars Vineyard makes several sparklers, but this fizz, in particular is a cracker. It comes from the estate’s Chardonnay grapes and is fuller, rounder and creamier and nuttier than most English fizz because they ferment and age the wine in oak barrels before giving the wine its bubbles. You still get the mouthwatering, crisp acidity of England, but it is married with a rich softness like lemon curd smeared on a warm brioche.” 

Decanter Worldwide Wine Awards (July 2017) 95 Points. Gold Medal. Greyfriars Blanc de Blancs Brut, Surrey 2013. Intense note of ripe lemon, toast and yeasty notes. Fresh palate with defined flavours of lovely ripe apple fruit. Chewy texture and an excellent fruit filled length. 

Julia Harding (Jancis Robinson Website June 2017) ‘The variety that stood out for me as offering real potential was Pinot Gris. The example from Greyfriars managed to achieve impressive depth of fruit and flavour even at a modest alcohol level, supported by fermentation in old oak.” 17/20 the highest rated English still wine.

Susie Barrie (Decanter Magazine August 2017) Greyfriars, Rose Reserve Brut, Surrey 2013. 94 Points. “Made from 100% Pinot Noir with a third of the blend fermented in old oak this antique gold-coloured rose is full of spiced plum fruit and creamy, roasted nut flavours. A rich-textured and toasty style that’s a great match for food.”

Tom Stevenson (World of Fine Wine Q3 2017) Greyfriars Blanc de Blancs Brut, Surrey 2013. Absolutely Gorgeous. Lovely lemony-toasty fruit aroma. Classy, long great intensity and finesse (98 points). His top rated English sparkling wine; Greyfriars, Rose Reserve Brut, Surrey 2013. Very pale peach-cum-apricot colour, hints of oak and Pinot, delicate fruit, fine mousse. Exemplary (92 points).

Introduction to Greyfriars Greyfriars was one of the

The recent rise in antique jewellery sales can be seen as a response to mass consumerism with a need for products which are individual and non-identical. Jacquie Gray, owner of jewellers, Grasilver, who specialise in Scandinavian design, states that now “women are more interested in buying good quality iconic pieces that are one-offs and not mass produced”.

Sporting antique jewellery has become more popular with women combining modern and antique pieces. Lynn Lindsay of the London-based Wimpole Antiques notes: “They are very versatile and play to the individual taste. We see clients who purchase an antique choker to wear with a modern chain or an antique ring to wear next to a modern ring with matching colours and stones.”

Anthea Gesua, founder of Anthea A G Antiques recommends going to antiques fairs, such as the upcoming Winter Art & Antiques Fair Olympia where she and over 100 of the UK’s top antiques dealers will sell their stock for six days.  She says: “It’s perfect if you are looking for antique jewellery as the goods are vetted*. She cautions: “When there is no independent vetting, be aware of older reproduction jewellery. Make a beeline for those dealers who are members of trade associations LAPADA and BADA.”

Buying from a dealer who is a member of a trade association means you can trust in the quality. “Not all antique pieces are as valuable as others, so always look out for good craftsmanship,” urges Anshul Rakyan, proprietor of A Rakyan Collection Ltd. “Of course only buy if you know you will wear the piece, as this is the most important reason. If you love the piece, and the price feels right, do make the purchase.  With these one-off products, once they are gone they are gone.”

Invest in one piece and make it the best you can afford. A retro gold bracelet makes a big statement and can be dressed up or down suggests Gesua who also advises looking out for jewellery from the important ‘houses’ such as Cartier, VCA, Boucheron, Bvlgari and Tiffany.

“Bracelets are popular now especially wide cuff ones from the 1940s and 1970s” agrees Lindsay of Wimpole Antiques, a regular exhibitor at the Winter Art & Antiques Fair, who points out that Vivianna Torun Bulow-Hube original pieces are very sought after at the moment with the 50 year anniversary working with Georg Jensen.

Rakyan believes, however, that every woman should have one or more piece in their collection from the Art Nouveau and Art Deco era. He makes the point that jewels from 1900 to 1930s (sometimes also 1940s) were created at the height of jewellery-making, not only in the way that they were made, but also for their designs. “These eras of Art Nouveau and Art Deco are very special,” he says. “Generally, we like antique pieces that contain nice gemstones (be it Kashmir sapphires, Burmese rubies, old-mine emeralds, natural pearls, old-cut diamonds), because these stones are rare and the quality that you can get in older pieces is, generally speaking, not  found in newer pieces. So, for us, a combination of nice gemstones combined with the intricate design and craftsmanship of the past (sometimes also by the famous makers that made these pieces) would be the best pieces to look out for.”

Gesua has another pearl of wisdom regarding engagement rings. She advises that when buying an engagement ring always spend as much as you can as it may be the only piece of jewellery you will own for a while before homemaking, housekeeping and children take over!

But, she also praises earrings, which ‘dress the face’, as a good investment option. Wimpole Antiques has noticed trends for easy to wear pieces which can go from day to night.  For example, there is a movement towards brooches recently. They are now being worn in various ways such as on the hip or on a hat or hung on a chain or choker.

As well as the fashion for brooches, Jackie Gray observes: “the trend is for vintage mid-century modern pieces where the effect is timeless and looks as modern today as it did back in the 1960s.”

She says that there is also still a tendency towards a silver or a space theme with Bjorn Weckstrom Lapponia pieces (as worn by princess Leia in the first Star Wars film) which looks set to continue and thrive, especially with the 40th anniversary coming up this year.

Rakyan agrees that for the last few years now, retro has been coming back into fashion and still is, but also says, “We can now see that the intricate work of the Victorian period is becoming popular again. While retro covers bold and chic fashion statements, Victorian and Art Deco jewels cover the intricate and fine workmanship.” Gesua adds that Early Georgian jewellery is still charming and very collectible too.

Ultimately, tastes differ and it’s very much about personal preference and individual style which is the beauty of antique jewellery. There is a wealth of pieces from different eras. So it comes down to budget and a dedication to hunting out that special piece that catches the eye.

Anthea A G Antiques, A Rakyan Collection Ltd, Grasilver and Wimpole Antiques are all exhibiting at Winter Art & Antiques Fair Olympia taking place 31 October – 5 November. Other jewellers at the fair include Horton Antiques and John Joseph.

* There is a very strict vetting process in place whereby everything is checked by independent experts to ensure that every piece for sale is genuine and correctly labelled.

The recent rise in antique jewellery sales

Sportswear firm Reebok has announced a collaboration with Savile Row tailors Huntsman that brings together the worlds of sport, fitness, fashion and innovation. The two iconic brands are working together on a one-of-a-kind project, Reebok x Huntsman, to create a prototype suit using Reebok’s exclusive new Flexweave material, a versatile new textile that can be produced using an unlimited array of fabrics.

The Huntsman prototype suit will extenuate the versatile potential of Reebok Flexweave, testing the material’s innovative figure-8 weave structure that can interlock different individual fibres. Led by Huntsman Head Cutter and Creative Director Campbell Carey, Huntsman will take the first generation of Flexweave material designed for footwear and curate the textile into a premium suit.

“This is a unique, creative and exciting proposition from Reebok. After closely examining Flexweave, we were both surprised and inspired by the challenge of using this non-traditional material to create a bespoke garment. The perfect suit is a fusion between fit, comfort and style – working with Flexweave to hit each of these essentials is an experiment we’ll relish,” said Campbell.

Huntsman will create the suit to the measurements of American football star and Reebok Running ambassador, Brandin Cooks. Cooks has worked closely with Reebok on the development of upcoming Flexweave footwear offerings and will now take centre stage in, testing the new textile’s potential in a creative and unexpected way. “Whether I’m walking into the stadium or relaxing on my off days, I love the confidence that good style brings.  Reebok Flexweave provides a performance fit and look unlike any other so I’m excited to see how the material translates into a custom suit. There are endless opportunities for what we can do with it,” said Brandin.

Reebok x Huntsman will conclude next  February with Huntsman delivering the suit to Cooks following months of experimentation and testing in its Saville Row workshop. For now, Huntsman has released some prospective sketches on the style and cut of the prototype garment.

“Flexweave is one of the most advanced steps in footwear upper construction. We are committed to bringing innovative technology to the running category to re-assert ourselves as a leader. We are thrilled to be partnering with Huntsman and push the limits of fit and function to develop a men’s suit using this innovative weave. Our goal is this level of tailoring in all our footwear,” said James Woolard, Brand Director, Reebok Running.

Flexweave is the latest innovation from the Reebok Innovation Collective, dedicated to creating new technologies, ideas, techniques and prototypes. For more information on the Reebok Innovation Collective please visit

Huntsman & Sons

Sportswear firm Reebok has announced a collaboration

Hotel Madero, Buenos Aires

Live, love and enjoy Buenos Aires with style. Located in the exclusive neighbourhood of Puerto Madero, Hotel Madero invites you to experience a new concept at the hotel industry. With art and design everywhere, the hotel has 197 spacious rooms with private balcony, a restaurant with an acclaimed and creative menu, the White Bar with a spectacular terrace and selected drinks. On the top floor is the Madero Spa with the most beautiful views of the city and river.

Beau-Rivage, Geneva

Elegant and authentic, Beau-Rivage is an exceptional house, with its incredible view on the iconic Jet d’Eau, the lake, the Mont-Blanc, the snowy summits and the city. Through its history, contribute to extend the list of extraordinary personalities who have stayed at Beau-Rivage. With its humanity and attention to detail, together we will make your stay unique.


Hotel Madero, Buenos Aires Live, love and enjoy

Daniel Evans travels to Scotland to discover the story behind Loch Lomond Distillery’s oldest and, at £12,000 a bottle, most expensive single malt whisky

As a year, 1967 has quite a lot to shout about. It saw the release of Sgt Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band, probably the most famous Beatles album, Sir Francis Chichester arrived in Plymouth after completing his single-handed voyage around the world and both Paul Gascoigne and Pamela Anderson were born.

It was also the year when something rather special was put in motion at the Loch Lomond Distillery just outside Glasgow. No doubt it was just an ordinary November day – the crucial date is November 19 – when someone filled a barrel with whisky. To be honest, as far as the whisky is concerned, nothing much has happened in the intervening years – other than, in 1998, the contents were transferred from an American oak hogshead barrel to  European oak hogshead one – as it matured to become what Michael Henry, the company’s master blender, describes today as “magnificent”. And it should be as buying a bottle will set you back £12,000.

The sense of anticipation in the air at the company’s headquarters is palpable as they prepare for the main event – the unveiling of the Loch Lomond 50 Year Old. CEO Colin Matthews explains: “For 50 years the Loch Lomond Distillery has been one of Scotland’s best kept secrets. With the launch of the 50 Year Old single malt, we are putting Loch Lomond firmly on the Scotch whisky map and we are proud to become one of a very select few distilleries in the world which have released a 50 year old whisky.”

Production director John Peterson is in no doubt. “The distinctive nature of the Loch Lomond 50 Year Old is testament to the innovative distillation techniques,” he says. “Our straight neck pot stills were unique in 1966 when they were first installed, and they are still unique to this day, providing us with greater control over the quality and flavour profile of the spirit.”

Master blender Michael Henry, pictured above, adds: “The expectations are high when you are working with a whisky as special and scarce as this and it came with great responsibility, but selecting and perfecting this single malt was a true honour.  Our stills are synonymous with the fruity notes they give to the whisky. The Loch Lomond 50 Year Old has been granted the time to truly concentrate that character, resulting in a rich, tropical fruit flavour.”

Each hand-blown crystal decanter encasing the Loch Lomond 50 Year Old is presented in a bespoke chest – The Tempest Chest – created by husband and wife team of Callum Robinson and Marisa Giannasi at Method Studio in Scotland.  “There are few distilleries named after a body of water as opposed to a place, and we drew great inspiration from Scotland’s most romantic, dramatic and historic loch,” explains Callum. “The Loch Lomond 50 Year Old is borne out of a truly mystical place of wood, fire, water and metal and our aim was to harness this energetic, elemental group of ingredients to create something unique, and worthy of its heritage. Each chest is designed to capture, in a three dimensional object, the mood and movement of moonlight dancing on tempestuous water. This is mirrored in the language of the hand-blown decanter and its beautifully faceted hand-cut base, perfectly binding the two together. It was a privilege to create a vessel to house something so precious.”

The Loch Lomond 50 Year Old limited edition of 60 bottles will be available to buy in the UK from December. Each bottle will cost £12,000 and can be ordered by contacting

Daniel Evans travels to Scotland to discover