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Coates & Seely

Coates & Seely is the result of a partnership between two English gentleman Christian Seely, the Managing Director of of Axa Millesimes (owners of Chateau Pichon-Longueville, Chateau Suduiraut and Quinta do Noval, among others) and Nicholas Coates a successful London financier. In 2007 whilst sitting on the vine-covered terrace of Seelys Bordeaux home the two friends proceeded to turn their initial idea into a hard plan: to create, a great English sparkling wine made from Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier and Chardonnay grapes grown on the Southern chalk downlands of England. They would call their sparkling wine Coates & Seely. A year passed, during which they scoured the slopes of southern England, in vain, for the ideal terroir. Then, on the verge of giving up, a series of chance encounters led them to a secluded valley of outstanding natural beauty only a mile and a half from Coates Hampshire home. On one side of the valley, a south-facing chalk slope was planted already with a twenty-acre vineyard. Known as The Wooldings, it had been established by Charles Cunningham, a 48 year old Englishman, fifteen years previously. Tragically, Charles life was cut short seven years previously and, as an act of devotion, the vineyard was being kept going by his 84-year old widowed mother, Daphne Cunningham. It was with her that Coates & Seely formed a partnership to develop the site into a best-in-class vineyard of Chardonnay, Pinot Noir and Pinot Meunier vines capable of producing the highest quality fruit for English sparkling wine