Darren Jenkins from Newport & his Italian Wines

Darren Jenkins from Newport & his Italian Wines

I first met Darren Jenkins when he walked into my shop in Newport Market (where I was based at the time) and asked if I would be interested in selling his wine.

My first instinct was, who is this random person and why does he think I would be interested in selling wine he's probably made in his bathtub?

I very kindly explained that I would not even consider selling a wine that I haven't had the opportunity to taste

to which he replied, "I've got a couple of cases in the boot of my car if you want me to grab some bottles for you to try?".

Surprised by his response, I actually agreed, and off he went.

When he came back, he explained that he was originally from Newport but had moved to Italy in 2008 with his family with the intention of starting a new life in the sun.

One thing led to another and they ended up restoring and running a wine estate, selling grapes to local wineries and catering for the local market.

They had zero knowledge or experience to begin with and although things got off to a difficult start, they persevered and started learning organic farming techniques. 

More than ten years later, they now farm organically, producing quality organic wines using sustainable practices as well as produce their own olive oil.

I tried his wines and I was so surprised by the quality that I ended up buying 4 cases of wine right then and there, collected directly from the boot of his car!

I've now been stocking Darren's wines for almost a year and always make sure to grab some more cases whenever he makes the trip down to Cardiff. I still collect directly from the boot of his car...

If you'd like to try a quality Italian wine made from a Welshman's vineyard, I can't recommend the Valentino & Finch range enough. They really have done a great job and have lots of interesting plans for the future. There's even talk of planting a lavender field and setting up a bee hive so they can produce their own lavender honey!

He's not back now until July so grab a bottle while they're still in stock!