After a few years selling fine Prosecco and seeing the popularity of it in the English market I wondered why English producers weren't making an 'English Prosecco'.  The popularity of Prosecco has been driven by taste; being a lighter, easy-drinking fruity style compared to Champagne which can be very acidic, dry and not so easy to drink (there are of course exceptions).  Then there is the price factor which certainly helps Prosecco too, being an affordable luxury.

I was were therefore delighted in 2018 to discover Fitz.  Fitz were the first English producer to make their English sparkling wine in the Charmat method, which is how Prosecco is made.   When I first tasted Fitz it was a very exciting moment and a realization that this is what I and the UK market had been waiting for.  The wine tasted wonderful, the bottle looked wonderful and it was competitively priced much below most other English sparkling wines in the market.  Not forgetting the fantastic team behind the wine.  They truly are just perfect!   

Julia with Fitz's Head Wine Maker, Gareth

Their wine cannot be called 'Prosecco' as even though the same method is used giving it similar characteristics in style (easy drinking and fruity), the wine is made using different grapes and it's not made in Italy - all of which prevent it being called Prosecco.  More on the name later.

 In 2016, Fitz finally decided to make their long‐term dream of making wine into a reality.   They had been excited about the English wine industry for a long time.  The biggest success story was English sparkling wine which is rivalling and surpassing the most famous of the top French Champagne brands so that seemed a good starting point in pursing their wine-making dream.

More from Fitz ...


Why try to imitate already successful products and producers?  How would we compete with wineries who had been crafting their products and markets succesfully for many years.  What could we do differently or better in order to be necessary?

These were questions that we needed to find answers to.  When we looked at the fantastic English sparkling wines on the market, we started to feel that the choice was a little narrow.  Many of them were made from the same (Champagne) grapes.  All of them were made in the same way using the Champagne method.  Alot of them seemed to favour similar brand presentation; There seemed to be room for some diversity.


So we decided to experiment with different grape varieties and also to produce our wines differently by using the Charmat method of secondary fermentation.  Our chosen combination of grape varietals and production techniques produce wines with a fresh, fruity-driven, approachable & easy drinking style which a many people enjoy.

Not everyone appreciates the dry, biscuit aromas and flavours of a Champagne style wine and we wanted to produce a uniquely different wine.  We saw a gap and moved to fill it.

We set about putting together a team of outstandingly talented individuals who could bring this idea to life and we built a state of the art winery to produce our wines.  We spoke to lots of people in the English wine industry about what we wanted to do and in some cases were surprised to be met with negativity about what we were doing.


Innovation sometimes causes concern.  Some quarters of the industry were worried we would come in and upset the applecart. We truly believe we can enhance the industry by offering choice.  Our aim has always been to produce a top quality sparkling wine that would offer a different style to other English wines. Not everyone enjoys a French Champagne some people prefer something different. There needs to be a range of choices for the wine drinker to suit all tastes so that English wine can be all things to all people otherwise they will go elsewhere.

We also discovered on our journey that we couldn’t officially call our wine ‘English Sparkling Wine’.  Even though our grapes are grown in England by English farmers, our wine is produced by an English winemaker in West Sussex and our wine is definitely sparkling, we aren’t allowed! For some reason the protected origin (PDO / PGI) legislation in England means you can only call your sparkling wine English Sparkling Wine if it is made by the Champagne method and as we’ve mentioned before we’re different to the rest!


Not ones to be put off and having already invested heavily in the necessary hi‐tech equipment we would need to make our product, we set about choosing a name and developing a brand.

We decided we wanted to tell our story of entering an industry where we didn’t seem to fit in, where we were seen to be illegitimate in some way. Our fight for future equality with the established order. We needed to prove ourselves first but will we one day be able to join the royalty and call our sparkling wine English?

FitzRoy is an Anglo‐Norman name originally meaning “son of the king” (from the French Fils de Roi). In many cases it was given to an illegitimate son or daughter of the king to mark their royal parent.

Fitz seemed to fit our story – we have quality parentage; from our English sourced fruit to our state of the art English winery. But we don’t quite fit in and can’t call ourselves one of the family!

So we are Fitz and we want to have fun – that’s the point of life. We make quality sparkling wine but we don’t need to take ourselves too seriously do we?!


Isn’t it rude and not PC to have the B word on a wine label? We don’t think so, we don’t use it as a derogatory term, as well as its status as a “rude word” (how quaint?) it means a person born of parents not married to each other, an illegitimate child – Fitz.

So there it is that’s what we are about that’s why we are called Fitz and that’s why we have a ‘rude’ word on our label. Most importantly we have created a high quality sparkling wine made in England from English grapes. Who cares what it’s called? Go ahead have fun, enjoy life and drink wine.