English wine looks set to crack America following the final negotiations of a new export deal between the UK's largest wine producer and a Virginia-based distributor.

The light and aromatic flavour profile of English wine was ideally suited to the typical American palate, said English Wines Group, which produces Kent-based Chapel Down Wines and has listings in M&S and Waitrose.

"The style of our wines suits the market extremely well, as US consumers like clean, fresh sparkling wines with a high acidity, which they are unable to produce over there," said EWG's sales director Guy Tresnan.

The profile of Chapel Down was raised among American wine distributors following the inclusion of its sparkling rosé on the wine menu of Gordon Ramsay's New York restaurant, The London.

A deal was "nearing completion" with a Virginia-based wine distributor, EWG said this week, and it expected five of its premium sparkling wines to gain listings in retail outlets across seven states, including Washington.

English wine currently had no retail presence in the US market and Chapel Down would be the first English brand to be listed, claimed Tresnan.

"If we market the wines correctly as exclusive, premium English products, we hope to export 50,000 to 60,000 bottles to the US, equating to up to 10% of our annual production."

Chapel Down expected to increase this year's grape production to 700 tonnes, in comparison to under 300 last year, thanks to a good harvest following sunny weather in June and July, said Tresnan. This would set the company up to continue exports if the deal succeeded, he added.

Sam Linter, MD of West Sussex-based Bolney Wine Estate, which supplies Bookers Vineyard wines to Tesco, Waitrose and the Co-op, said she expected English wine to quickly win plaudits in the US.

"English wines may well be a hit across the pond as Americans enjoy drinking light, aromatic wines, which are typical characteristics of English variants. We too are eyeing up the US market. It's a tempting and viable opportunity."