Think of quality Pinot Noir wine regions and you could be forgiven for thinking of Burgundy, California, Germany and New Zealand before you think of the South of France. So the chances are you might not think immediately of the Languedoc-Roussillon where IGP Pays d’Oc Pinot Noir comes from because of the heat. And yet the variety of soils, micro-climates and lay of the land in the region and the freedom of expression that is allowed with IGP Pays d’Oc has resulted in a vast choice of high-quality Pinot Noir at barely credible prices. Which is why Peter McCombie MW called his recent masterclass on the subject – ‘IGP Pays d’Oc Pinot Noir – the great alternative’. Peter Dean reports.
“We must not be afraid of the word ‘bulk’…for me, bulk means creativity. It is the foundations of the house on which you can choose to build one way or another.” That’s the open minded approach that the World Bulk Wine Exhibition (WBWE) wants to take when providing the global wine industry the platform to buy and sell wine and do business, says Cristina V Miranda the event’s marketing and communications director. Here she explains what to expect at this year’s event.
For a Champagne house so in love with Pinot it is curious that it has taken 42 years for Champagne Bruno Paillard to release a new Blanc de Noirs since its first one way back in 1981. “You have to start somewhere'” Alice Paillard tells Peter Dean, as she explains why she eschewed opulence and sweetness in the Bruno Paillard Blanc de Noirs MV and opted instead for refinement with a very low dosage – a true sommelier’s cuvée if ever there was one.
As India’s first Master of Wine Sonal C Holland is well placed to assess both the huge opportunities there are to grow wine consumption in India, but also the challenges the sector has to make a major breakthrough. She will be sharing her insights at Wine Future in Coimbra, Portugal in November and is the latest speaker at the event to give their views on the state of the global wine industry.
The release of a new Kumeu River vintage is always an event. One of New Zealand’s finest and most sought-after producers, this legendary estate is best known for its Chardonnays which give many a 1er and Grand Cru white Burgundy a run for their money. Located 20 km northwest of Auckland, the estate now boasts two Pinot Noirs, one of which comes from its youngest vineyard, Ray’s Road, purchased from Trinity Hill six years ago. To launch the Kumeu River 2022 vintage, marketing director Paul Brajkovich was in London to host an in-depth tasting of the wines. Sophia Longhi hooked up with him to get the back story of the vintage.
There are all types of managers, chief executives and business owners. If they are successful and well liked then their unique personality and way of working will be a large reason for their success. But there are also great swathes of business leaders who are not good managers and even worse at looking after their most important asset – their people. It’s why every book store in the land is packed with management support books and advice on how to be a better boss. Ade McKeon is well placed to know what it takes to be a good boss – having held senior roles right across the drinks and retail sector including Cobra Beer, Asda, Mumm Champagne, Courvoisier, Jim Beam and Accolade Wines. He is now looking to share his experiences of what it takes to be a not just a good business leader, but how to get the most of your teams, through his executive coach business, Triade Consultancy. Here are his 12 rules that will give the business framework for your staff to shine.
“What gives me the most satisfaction is seeing the progress of individuals and teams. It’s all too easy to focus on the P&L neither giving the time nor the investment to the needs of the team.” Here’s Ade McKeon’s 12 steps to business success.
‘The new luxury’ is the tack being taken by LVMH to make sustainability synonymous with desirability – ensuring that its luxury goods will be lapped up by eco-savvy millennials. Nowhere is this more apparent than in the thinking behind Galoupet, the ultra-premium Provence rosé brand it acquired four years ago. Victor Smart travelled to rosé country, talks to managing director Nadine Fau-Santucci about the changes since the buy-out and samples both the new 2022 vintage and the just-pressed juice of the 2023 wine.
France’s Rhône Valley, whether we’re talking about the narrow gorges and hillsides of the Northern Rhône or the rolling hills and mountainous peaks of the Southern Rhône, has been synonymous with some of the finest red wines in the world. In recent years, however, a growing number of producers have reassessed their terroir and portfolios and added increasing numbers of white wines across these iconic AOCs. This summer, the inter-professional body, Inter-Rhône, have been highlighting this growing trend with a series of white wine specific events, culminating in the Rhône White Party in London, showcasing over 100 white wines. We sent The Buyer’s Mike Turner to find out more and pick a few favourites for us to keep our eyes on.
If you are looking to shake up your Italian wine list and introduce new wines to your customers then put October 4 in your diary for Borsa Vini Italiani 2023 – your true one stop shop for all things Italian. Organised by the Italian Trade Agency it will feature producers from most of the major wine regions, many of whom are seeking distribution for the first time, alongside UK importers showing wines from their ranges. Here’s what to expect.
Winter rain and warm summer months, without any heat spikes, have helped Erràzuriz’s Francisco Baettig turn in three outstanding premium wines in the shape of the new 2021 Seña, Viñedo Chadwick and newcomer Rocas de Seña. Although not truly cool as in a Bordeaux vintage of old, 2021 has the Médoc all over these wines with the vintage set to be a classic in Chile, as Baettig explains. Heather Dougherty listens, tastes, evaluates and provides some fascinating insight into the background of the wines.
Mark Squires is an attorney turned respected wine critic and journalist whose blog caught the attention of Robert Parker, inviting him in 2006 to become a key part of the Wine Advocate team, covering initially Portugal and the Port, Greece, Lebanon, Bulgaria, Romania, Serbia, Republic of Macedonia and Cyprus before he left the title earlier in the summer. He is the latest high profile figure to share his thoughts on the challenges facing the wine industry in the build up to the Wine Future conference in Portugal in November.
Launching a new brand into such a competitive market as the drinks industry takes some doing, but when you find out a former colleague has come up with virtually the same idea makes you think you might be on to a winner and becomes a little less daunting to embark on. That was the case for Laura Riches and Laura Rosenberger when they saw the gap for a premium boxed wine brand and Laylo was born. Here Laura Riches explains how they have made their idea such a success.
Creative freedom, the Mediterranean lifestyle and an open mindset have attracted some of the world’s most exciting winemakers to IGP Pays d’Oc in Languedoc Roussillon. During an extensive tour of the wine region, Lisse Garnett drags two reluctant stars into the spotlight for in-depth wine analysis… Nathalie Estribeau, the wine director of the giant yet innovative cooperative Les Vignobles Foncalieu and Karen Turner, formerly of Hugel and Chapoutier, now the winemaker at newly-minted Domaine Uma. Both talk New World versus Old and express their love for the liberty of the Languedoc.
The wine agency model comes in all different sizes, with a whole range of operating models. From the big national players that have 100s of producers and 1000s of wines on their books, right through to the small independent boutique operators with a specific niche or speciality. But as producers and suppliers, alike, look to offer more personalised and bespoke agency services one of the fastest growing and seemingly successful ways of working is for producers to have a controlling stake in their distributor and work hand in hand with that supplier on more of a partnership basis. Which is very much the way that New Generation Wines has built up its business with a strong core of South African wine producer partners as its key point of difference. Richard Siddle sits down with managing director, James McKenna, to find out how it all works and why he thinks its partnership model offers its customers the best possible service.
Garda DOC is one of the youngest, most ambitious and fastest-growing wine regions in Italy. In six years, production of its approachable, well-priced wines has increased four-fold with yet more growth targeted by the appellation’s 250 wine producers over the coming years. Kate Hawkings travelled to Italy’s largest lake to see what all the fuss is about, met up with the Consorzio’s key movers and shakers and witnessed first-hand how they are setting out to emulate Tuscany’s success in having wine and tourism equally respected and revered.
Following this year’s education campaign to bring wine buyers up to speed about the quality and value to be found in the Rhône valley, Rhône wine body Inter Rhône invited The Buyer’s Geoffrey Dean to discover first-hand what winemakers are achieving in the region. In an extensive tour of the lesser known appellations of Rasteau, Lirac, Costières de Nîmes and Saint-Joseph, plus tasting wines from Côtes du Rhône, Dean met a large number of winemakers who are matching the diversity of soils with a wide range of grape varieties, many of them from old vines that are producing wines of both power and elegance.
This month’s new Louis Roederer Collection 244 gets released two years after the House bravely ditched its best-selling Brut Premier NV cuvée and replaced it with the Collection, a multi-vintage blend that uses both a string of reserve wines and a high proportion of solera-style Perpetual Reserve – created in 2012 and topped up after subsequent harvests. Underlying the move is cellar master Jean-Baptiste Lécaillon’s vision to cope with warming temperatures in the region and to create an unique NV that gets increasingly complex with each subsequent harvest. Roger Jones attended the launch of the new Champagne which he tasted alongside every iteration made, four of which were never given a standard release.
“Why do marketers and leaders in wine and spirits businesses so often assume that our consumers are like us?” That’s the view that Lulie Halstead believes holds so many drinks producers back when trying to engage with and market their products to their target audience. In her latest article for The Buyer she sets out why companies need to stop looking at the products they produce through their own eyes, but what they mean to the people they expect to buy them.
Grappa, the Italian spirit made from grape pomace, has a chequered history. The grappa that arrived on the shores of the UK was, for many years, an industrial product that often lacked the nuance and elegance of the finest grappa. Spirits lovers in the UK and across the world struggled to find an appreciation for these distilled grape skins. In recent years, however, a group of committed distilleries has been overseeing a resurgence in the quality and reputation of grappa. The Buyer’s Mike Turner recently visited one such distillery, Marolo in Piemonte, to discover its vision on how to make a truly great grappa.
“We wanted to create a competition which would be true to the two principles we had defined: ambition and sustainability.” That’s how Rodolphe Lameyse, chief executive of Vinexposium, the world leading events business behind shows such as Wine Paris & Vinexpo Paris and World Bulk Wine Exhibition, introduces its new business awards – the V d’Or – to highlight and reward drinks companies that are excelling in the way they are driving their businesses forward. Here he explains how the V d’Ors are going to work.