Roger Jones… in Medlar’s dining room… with Nigel Greening… and 33 vintages of Felton Road. It does read like a Cluedo card and it does feel like there will be a prostrate body discovered somewhere during proceedings. But, far from it – Felton Road’s Nigel Greening was in town, hitting the circuit to promote the Felton Road 2021 vintage – this Central Otago-based winery’s 25th vintage release. And what better way to analyse this estate’s short but influential journey than opening a raft of library bottles alongside the new wines to demonstrate their future trajectory?
With very appropriate timing the all-female group of wine writers, broadcasters and social media marketers, collectively known as The Wine Collective, are celebrating their one year anniversary to coincide with this year’s International Women’s Day. Over the last 12 months the combined talents of Libby Brodie, Sophia Longhi, Hannah Milnes and Charlotte Kristensen have helped bring a new, refreshing, impactful and highly targeted approach to creating a wide range of wine content and created their own space in the already crowded wine communications field. Here they talk to Richard Siddle about what brought them together and why they think together the Wine Collective offers something different and exciting for the wine industry to connect with their target market.
6, rue des Trois Faucons
As Domaine Gayda looks to celebrate 20 years of making wine in the Languedoc, co-founder, Tim Ford, looks back on what the business has been able to achieve in establishing a range of branded wines, centred around its flagship brand Chemin de Moscou, that champions the diversity of terroir and grape varieties of the Languedoc whilst also celebrating what IGP wines can achieve. He also looks ahead to where he hopes Domaine Gayda can go to in the years to come.
It has been less than two months since Bollinger’s Gilles Descôtes died with Denis Bunner taking over his boss’s role as chief winemaker within a restructured team. Here he talks exclusively to The Buyer – on the day that the House is launching Bollinger RD 2008 – about Descôtes’ legacy, what drives innovation, and the priorities of the role as all eyes are focused on the House’s 2029 bicentennial celebrations which will see a new cellar built and a wine lovers’ boutique hotel unveiled on-site. Tasting notes and details of Bollinger RD 2008 also feature.
As the Low & No alcohol category continues to grow, drinks inventor David Gluckman – the man who was part of the team that invented Baileys – examines what is happening with Seedlip and the many new entrants to the market that have followed suit. Is the customer being ripped off? And will the bottom fall out of the market? In a fascinating insight, Gluckman thinks both are very real possibilities and suggests some complete (and rather exciting) new directions for Low & No to take. One that the giant manufacturers of soft drinks and mixers would do well to have a think about…
Les Grands Chais de France might sell wine in close to 170 countries around the world but it’s the UK which continues to show the way for its premium wines as more independent wine merchants and regional players look to take advantage of the enormous opportunities it can offer not just from France, but around the world. Wines that will be on show at its big regional tastings taking place in Birmingham and Leeds this week, as UK channel controller, Chris Davies, explains.
“A great gateway sipper for wine lovers and complex enough for aficionados.” That’s how The Three Drinkers’ Helena Nicklin and Aidy Smith describe the limited edition Bordeaux finished Irish Whiskey that they have come up with in time for St Patrick’s Day and also as a marker to help promote the upcoming third series of The Three Drinkers that is due to be released on Amazon in late spring. Here Nicklin and Smith explain why they wanted to make, as well as talk about whisky.
As climate change deepens its impact in Champagne so the cellar masters are speaking about the role of bitterness and the part it plays in keeping freshness in the new wines. For Veuve Clicquot’s cellar master Didier Mariotti, the new release of La Grande Dame 2015 is also about structure and texture. He explains what he means to Anne Krebiehl MW who tastes the new cuvée alongside the 2012 vintage as well as with a limited edition red wine called Parcelle Clos Colin which is being made available alongside the La Grande Dame Rosé 2012
“Riverland is Australia’s most diverse and experimental wine region,” that’s the bold claim from Riverland Wine’s executive officer, Lyndall Rowe, which is quite the statement considering the competition it has from the country’s other main wine regions. You will be able to judge for yourself at this month’s ProWein as Rowe is leading a group of Riverland producers who will be travelling to Dusseldorf to show just how “diverse” and “experimental” its wines are. Here she explains just what makes the Riverland so special.
Roger Jones confesses to not having drunk much Beaujolais over the past few decades. Once a massive fan he even used to put a sign up in his London restaurant that read “Beaujolais Nouveau non Arrivé… but we have some excellent aged Cru Beaujolais.” A recent tasting with Château des Jacques winemaker Cyril Chirouze, then, was an opportunity to discover how much he had missed in the way of classy, single vineyard Gamay… and it turned into a bit of an epiphany.
There is no shortage in producers, importers and buyers wanting to do business with each other the problem is how they do it. The on-going supply chain issues and constant increases in dry good costs for packaging, and the huge shortages in glass, screwcaps and labels means negotiating contracts between drinks producers and buyers has become far more complicated than just agreeing the price on grapes, or a bottle of wine and spirits. That’s why the first One Step Beyond webinar of 2023, organised by The Buyer and Sophie Jump, will look to tackle just how producers, importers, retailers and buyers are having to rewrite the rules of trading. Here’s who is taking part and how you can sign up for free.
The world of beers, wine and spirits has never been more of an open market with the opportunity to do business with drinks producers in any country. But it has also become increasingly complicated, costly and timely to send drinks around the world, particularly from so-called deep sea markets. Bevo Shelves hopes it can make importing beverages of any persuasion from Australia and New Zealand, in particular, far more straight forward with its new logistics and shipping support platform. Andrew Jones explains how it works.
Although Georgian wine is one of the most ancient viticultures, it is currently experiencing a renaissance with the number of wineries booming, investment increasing and red wine slowly elbowing its way into market dominance. Fresh from leading a delegate of wine experts to judge the latest Georgian wines for the IWSC, Sarah Abbott MW analyses the latest trends and points out some of the rising stars – some which are available in the UK and others which are still up for grabs.
It was a busy time in Manchester last night as both the wine and spirits worlds came together to celebrate the best in their respective sectors with the results for both the People’s Choice Wine and People’s Choice Spirits Awards. The event continues to build momentum every year as founder and organisers, Janet Harrison and Judy Kendrick, bring more brands, producers, importers and retailers into the two competitions – the only major drinks awards that involves consumers in the judging process. Here are the full list of finalists and winners.
A number of leading drinks can producers have come together today to launch what they are calling their ‘Canifesto’ to urge more operators and venues across the on-trade to both welcome cans into their businesses, but champion them for the quality of drinks they now offer, how easy they are for hospitality staff to use and handle and the positive impact they have on the environment. Here we share the ‘Canifesto’ that leading brands – MOTH, Longbottom & Co, The Uncommon, TRIP and Jukes Cordialities – have come up with.
Most high-end restaurants would not even list any Proseccos in the fear of sacrificing the profit on Champagne sales. But are there opportunities for Asolo to tap into the premium Prosecco category? In a revealing account, Leona De Pasquale explains what the differences are between Asolo and other wines in the premium Prosecco category, most notably Conegliano Valdobbiadene. And examines Asolo’s potential in both premium off and on-trade.
Considering Spain is by far the biggest wine export country in the world, it should be no surprise a large proportion of its wines comes to the UK. But what are leading importers, wine merchants and buyers looking to source for their lists? Is it the traditional, classic regions that still rule the roost, or are buyers looking to tap into more modern winemaking styles and going out of their way to discover new winemakers and producers to work with? To find out, The Buyer teamed up with Wines from Spain to host its latest zoom debate with a panel made up of some of the most influential buyers in the premium UK wine market.
With none of Tyrrell’s Vat series wines produced in 2020 because of smoke taint, the importance of Tyrrell’s 2021 Vat releases has been put into keener focus. Winemaker Bruce Tyrrell was in London to launch the wines, host an intimate press lunch last Friday at Frog, Adam Handling’s Michelin star restaurant, and talk about Semillon, honest winemaking and shooting drones out of the sky.
Caroline Gilby MW has arguably been the biggest voice and influence in promoting wines and producers from Central and Eastern Europe in the UK wine market. First as a buyer and then as an esteemed wine writer, judge and commentator. She is now looking to use her expertise to champion the growing number of female winemakers that are now making their name right across the region at a special tasting in London next month. Here she explains why and what to expect.