Askham Hall’s status as a global destination for wine lovers is growing. Hot on the heels of being honoured by Wine Spectator’s Restaurant Awards, the renowned restaurant with rooms is planning a special wine banquet to bring an ancient French tradition to Cumbria.

‘Le Beaujolais Nouveau est arrivée’ is an annual custom celebrated across France on the third Thursday of November, with an array of music and festivals. It marks the release of grapes harvested in the famous Beaujolais region and this year, a taste of the continent will be coming to Cumbria, with a banquet at Askham Hall’s atmospheric Bank Barn – or ‘Party barn’.

Under French law, the wine is released at 12.01am on Thursday 21 November, and to mark the occasion, the Cumbrian celebrations will get underway at Askham Hall at 7pm that day.

Featuring live music and a bistro environment, Beaujolais Nouveau will be served free flow. It will be accompanied by a menu specially created to complement the wine’s grapes and using an abundance of local produce from Askham Hall’s kitchen gardens and the Lowther family estate.

The evening will be hosted by Askham Hall’s Sommelier Nico Chièze, who says Askham Hall’s reputation is soaring following its recent inclusion in the Wine Spectator Restaurant Awards.

Based in the United States and around three million readers worldwide, American lifestyle magazine and website Wine Spectator is recognised as a leading authority on wine and Askham Hall was included in the magazine’s prestigious ‘best of’ list for the second year running.

The Wine Spectator Restaurant Awards have been highlighting the world’s best wine lists for almost four decades and the results have been drawn from expert reviews of more than 15,000 wines.

Askham Hall’s ‘best of’ award recognises Askham’s extensive selection of more than 500 wines from France and Spain, with significant vintage and breadth across multiple regions.

It also coincides with the restaurant being awarded 3AA rosettes earlier this year.

Nico comments; “We are proud to be on a global list which celebrates quality, diversity and customer service. Wine is such an important part of many people’s dining experience and it is immensely satisfying to see a Cumbrian restaurant being included on this list celebrating the world’s very best.”

Looking ahead to the ‘Le Beaujolais Nouveau est arrivée’, he adds; “More and more of our guests are expressing an interest in our regular wine evenings and wine-themed events.

“As a proud Frenchman, it is fantastic that Cumbria is embracing this special French tradition, which has become part of the national culture over many decades. Festivals are held throughout France to mark the arrival of Beaujolais Nouveau day and by bringing this unique custom to Askham Hall, we are celebrating not only the art of wine-making but also helping a wider range of people to appreciate some of the finest tastes and aromas available to wine lovers.”

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