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    The French debate: putting France under the spotlight with Foncalieu

    France might be the best selling country in the UK on-trade, but that does not mean it could not sell. To help better understand the opportunities and challenges facing French wine in the premium on-trade, The Buyer linked up with Les Vignobles Foncalieu and leading buyers from the different types of operator, including high end restaurants, independent wine merchants and national wholesalers all working the French category in the north west of the country.

    Insight Tasting Tasting: Panel Tasting

    New Zealand Debate: the opportunities and challenges

    New Zealand’s enormous success in the UK off-trade, where its Sauvignon Blanc has created a category of its own, has not always been reflected in how many of its wines are on premium on-trade wine lists. The Buyer teamed up with Villa Maria, and its UK partners, Hatch Mansfield, to ask a panel of leading UK buyers to set out the challenges and opportunities for New Zealand in the premium on-trade

    Insight Tasting Tasting: Panel Tasting

    The Buyer’s Case with Les Vignerons Foncalieu

    The Buyer’s Case is a new initiative that gives producers the chance to show specific drinks to key buyers in target channels of the on-trade. For our first Buyer’s Case we teamed up with Les Vignerons Foncalieu and selected key buyers in its main distribution areas in the UK on-trade to show their wines. Here are the results.

    Insight Tasting Tasting: Panel Tasting

    Virginia Wine Project: bringing producers and buyers together

    The Buyer teamed up with Virginia Wine and some of its key producers to help them better understand the needs of the UK premium on-trade and how buyers might relate to their wines with both a business roundtable debate with key players and a study tour of leading London restaurants, wine bars and merchants to see the kind of offers they have and where their wines might fit in.



    Tasting with pictures View All
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    • Unpretentious table quaffing wine that punches above its weight 2013hellip
      Unpretentious table/ quaffing wine that punches above its weight. 2013 and yet the deep golden colour (with green hue) makes it look older. Fresh in the mouth with lime pith, lemon grass, green apple. Acidity possibly falling off a bit, but amazing value for a wine you can pick up for £10. Served with seafood linguine with a light tomato, spicy sauce.
    • Hes noted for his extraordinary Pinot Noir but his Syrahhellip
      He's noted for his extraordinary Pinot Noir but his Syrah is also fabulous, and drinking better now than on release where I thought it was slightly too lean. This requires a 2-hr decant. The wine is pure white pepper on the nose, complex flavours of black fruit, precise, well-structured. Will evolve for many years.
    • This is a top Chenin from SAs Painted Wolf hellip
      This is a top Chenin from SA's Painted Wolf - a real find the other day. It's got the feel of a Demi-Sec from Vouvray - so has volume in the mouth but in a nice dry style. All his single vineyard whites were outstanding. Read more about him on
    • Unique A saigne Ros made from bulk German grape Trollingerhellip
      Unique. A saignée Rosé made from bulk German grape Trollinger. This looks like from the colour it's going to be sickly sweet, but's dry, wonderfully textured and has some nice acidity. Perfect as an aperitif with nibbles, I bought it direct for €6
    • Theres Vouvray and then theres Huet Unmistakeable Chenin Blanc Terrifichellip
      There's Vouvray and then there's Huet. Unmistakeable Chenin Blanc. Terrific core of acidity, ripe fruit, quite evolved colour and phenolics. Quite delicious and still a baby.
    • Proof that Mendozas great wines age spectacularly well This ishellip
      Proof that Mendoza's great wines age spectacularly well. This is a Cabernet Franc-dominated Bordeaux blend. Many of the same phenolic and taste characteristics are there - bramble, red fruit on the nose & ripe blackcurrant, mint, toast on the palate. Only quibble is how much glass was in the bottle! 1.18 kilos! Heaviest bottle I think I've had for a table wine.