We have been spoilt for choice over the last three months with the number of new ideas and innovations that have been introduced in response to Covid-19. Here David Rowledge, founder of Alchemy Wines, talks to Richard Siddle about a new community drinks brand that he believes has the potential to work across all drinks categories from wine, beers, spirits to soft drinks and water and raise money for drinks charities both during the crisis and for the long term.
As the UK and the world slowly starts to look at how it can emerge from the other side of Covid-19 The Buyer has scaled up its rolling Hub and updates service to keep the drinks, retail and hospitality sectors up to date with what steps are being taken to help businesses not just survive, but regroup, relaunch and come out of this crisis with the tools and knowledge to grow. This is Part Four of The Buyer’s Covid-19 blog that starts on May 28 with all the latest insights, stats, and drinks trade reaction.
This Finger Lakes winery has been recognised for the last nine years as one of the world’s Top 100 Estates by Wine & Spirits Magazine; Wine Spectator listed the winery on the top 100 Wines in the world in 2010; and critics and connoisseurs such as Robert Parker and Eric Asimov, consistently mention Hermann J. Wiemer Vineyard as the top Riesling producer in the US. Here Jennifer Menges, director of operations for Hermann J Wiemer Vineyard and Standing Stone Vineyards looks at the reasons behind its on-going success and why it’s still keen to grow its exports in our on-going series profiling different New York producers.
The release this week of new vintages of Kali Hart and Sleepy Hollow Vineyard Chardonnay and Pinot, marks five years since E&J Gallo bought Talbott Vineyards with the aim of broadening the regional diversity of its burgeoning premium portfolio. Instead of parachuting in a Napa hotshot, Gallo made the wise move of giving David Coventry the chief winemaker job – a man who had made wine in Monterey County for over 20 years and has his very own way of doing things. David Kermode met up with him and Gallo’s Edouard Baijot MW to hear how Talbott’s cool climate style wines offer on-trade and off-trade a real point of difference.
As the mindset across the on-trade and hospitality sectors changes from bunker and survival mode, to recovery and potential re-launch it’s even more important that bars, pub groups and restaurant operators are up to speed with the latest insights, trends and consumer research during the Covid-19 lockdown. That’s why The Buyer has teamed up with on-trade drinks analysts, CGA, to provide a new monthly, free Wine Trade Bulletin to help you keep on top of the situation.
We might not be able to travel to Sonoma County at the moment, but that does not mean you can’t access some of the most exclusive wines available in the county. For the first time the annual Sonoma County Barrel Auction is going online this year to allow wine buyers to bid from anywhere in the world for never to be seen again wines from the region’s top producers. The auction takes place between June 16 to June 18 and the chance to bid for “Never Before, Never Again”. Here’s how it’s going to work…
For most of us 2020 will go down in history as our annus horribilis. For Bernard Retornaz, who has been heading up Louis Latour’s operation in California for almost three decades, this year is one he really wants to see the back of. Quite apart from Covid which has hit 48% of his business, Trump’s tariffs on French wine have meant price hikes of 30-34%. Then there are the differing lockdown-easing scenarios which means it is like doing business with 50 different countries. In a sobering and insightful discussion, Retornaz tells David Kermode how he has boxed clever this year, unable to deal direct with the consumer and seeing a future where he predicts 30-40% of the on trade will not reopen.
As a top designer of wine bottles and spirits Kevin Shaw gets more than his fair share of samples to keep him going, but up to recently there has been a gap not only in his drinking but in the projects that his agency, Stranger & Stranger, has pitched to work on. Until he rediscovered his love and interest in beer. He had for years fallen out of love with what he felt was all uninspiring lager. But now he has once again seen the light. Here’s why…
Bordeaux En Primeur, arguably the most important date in the global fine wine calendar, should be postponed for the 2019 harvest, according to Liv-ex. Failing that, or only a dramatic move price-wise will be enough to justify it, according to the latest report from the global marketplace for the wine trade. Peter Dean highlights some of the key findings from Bordeaux 2019 – The Value of Time as the first chateaux release their 2019 En Primeur prices.