If you do the popular wine tasting during your stay – and you should – you’ll hear all about America’s animated history, and how she came to the UK and unexpectedly ended up in the Sussex countryside, working the vines herself, all the while wearing those soaring heels. The estate was originally owned by Guinness for farming hops, and America and Nick live in the original Oast house. The story behind the Hobbit House is that it was originally intended to be a treehouse but the planning permissions weren’t approved. The couple then suggested an earth house instead, which tend to blend into the landscape more harmoniously, and the rest, as they say, is history.
The food and drink
Cooks will be happy to make use of the kitchen, or there are plenty of pubs nearby in Bodiam. You can book the vineyard tour and tasting for £30 per person, which runs on the weekends from April to October, and on weekdays from July until 3 September. During the tasting, you’ll enjoy generous glasses of their Rosé, Sparkling Wine, Pinot Gri and Pino Noir, plus the option to bring bottles home with you and a discount.
Anything left to mention?
If you’re checking out on Sunday, visit Bodiam Castle in the morning before heading across the road to The Castle Inn where they do a cracking roast.
Address: Junction Road, Bodiam, Robertsbridge TN32 5XA
Price: from £300