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John Worontschak has been making English wine since 1988.

In 2010 John decided to create the first Litmus wine, Element 20. The concept was to move away from the traditional fruity and often one-dimensional English wine styles.

The Litmus range is the culmination of John's experience and are designed to highlight the very best of cool climate English still wines promoting balance, complexity and length of flavour.

The range consists of four wines - Element 20, White Pinot, Red Pinot and Orange.


To be and be seen as being the very best still wines produced in England, producing food orientated Northern European cool climate styles.


John Worontschak is the founding director of Litmus Wines and one of the world's leading wine business consultants. Having worked in almost every wine producing country in the world from Mexico to Moldova and in between he brings a wealth of winemaking talent to the Litmus business.

Viticulture & Winemaking

England’s varied and capricious seasons mean that in reality there are no “best sites”. Litmus is produced from a number of sites in Essex, Surrey and Sussex working closely with the vineyard owners to achieve premium ripe fruit that requires little or more often no winemaking intervention. The use of older barriques and extended lees contact are a hallmark of Litmus wines.


The Image

Ancient marine fossils known as coccolith’s furnish our vineyard soil with an abundance of calcium – the backbone of truly complex and long-lasting wines, and The 20th Element of The Periodic Table.  The star shaped image on our label is a stylised ‘discoaster’ coccolith.  This image symbolises not only the significance of soil in the production of fine wine, but also the New English Wine – a star in ascendance.

The 2014 Vintage

The 2014 growing season was sensational. Perfect flowering conditions followed by August rains and a warm September led to early ripening of a good crop in the coolness of October.

The 2016 Vintage

In 2016, budburst was followed by a late frost and an extensive rainy period between mid-May and the end of June. Fortunately, unusually hot and dry conditions prevailed from Mid-August through to October to yield a small yet perfectly ripened and healthy crop.

The 2019 Vintage

Virtually spring frost free, 2019 got off to a great start with moderate to good yields predicted. Prolonged rainy periods throughout the season gave rise to some difficulties with the best drained sites producing the highest quality wines.