A NEW English wine initiative is being launched by a vineyard near Alresford.

The Big English Wine Adventure sees Hattingley Valley, teaming up with TV presenters and Masters of Wine Susie Barrie and Peter Richards to make a small-production Hampshire Blanc de Blancs.

Familiar faces from presenting on flagship BBC1 show Saturday Kitchen, the couple are asking for help in selecting a charity to support with the venture, as well as in finding a name for the wine.

“The project is intended to be fun but also fundamentally collaborative in nature, working to benefit good causes,” said Susie.

“We want to help people get more involved in the process, as well as make some noise about the fantastic job being done by the many brilliant winemakers in this country – and we’d like to thank Hattingley in this. Primarily, though, our aim is to make an utterly delicious wine”.

Susie and Peter have produced two short films documenting their attempts at harvesting and blending.

The 1,000-bottle production wine is made from the 2016 vintage – the year of the Rio Olympics, Brexit, Bowie, Trump and the final BBC Bake Off, not to mention Andy Murray winning Wimbledon.

It was also the warmest year ever recorded, making it a promising vintage from a quality point of view.

The wine was sourced primarily from Cottonworth vineyards, managed by Hattingley Valley Wines.

The base wine was part-aged in oak and is destined for considerable ageing on lees and under cork, with release pencilled for 2021/2022.

Susie and Peter will also be looking to design a label and packaging in a collaborative effort with local students.

“We’d love to hear from people with ideas for charities we could support that are close to their heart,” said Peter.

“As for the wine name, we’re looking for inspired suggestions and hopefully we’ll come up with something a bit more original than Winey McWineFace.

“We’ve already had some great shouts, which have proved both amusing and thought-provoking, and we look forward to many more.”

Once all votes are in, and a final decision has been made on the charity to support, Susie and Peter will randomly draw a name from those who proposed this charity to receive six bottles of their wine.

The same procedure will apply to the selection of the wine name.

Voting forms can be found of Susie and Peter’s website.