He was crowned at the Kent Life and Kent on Sunday food and drink awards. Biddenden also reached the top three in the drink producer of the year category, which was awarded to Anno Distillers, Marden.
This year’s awards witnessed a record number of nominations spread across 11 different categories, with the top three finalists in each category enjoying a sparkling wine reception (with Biddenden’s Gribble Bridge sparkling rosé, 2012 and Red Love apple juice) followed by a three course meal (with Biddenden’s Ortega, 2014) before the winners were unveiled.
Mr Barnes, managing director at Biddenden, said: “From our estate bottled wines such as Ortega, to our strong Kentish ciders, and our new products such as the Red Love apple juice, we are incredibly passionate about all the drinks we produce at the vineyard.
“We work hard to ensure all our products are crafted with Kent in mind and keep all aspects of the business as local as possible from the grape picking which is still done by hand by a team of local workers, to our apples which are sourced within a 15 mile radius. Even our distribution is still done independently.”
Biddenden supplies a number of restaurants, pubs, hotels, farm shops, delicatessens and independent retailers across Kent, East and West Sussex, Surrey and south east London. The vineyards open daily to visitors throughout the year with free admission and tastings.