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The Guardian

Published:  28 July, 2008

Victoria Moore is on Soave and how in the past, the varietal became a "synonym for neutral and insipid". However, this is no longer the case, she adds, with the grape doing much "rowing back" from its reputation of old. The pick of her four choices with 4.5 stars out of five is the 2006 Soave Classico Inama Vin (£9.99, Majestic), which is rich without being a "blunderbuss".

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The Sunday Telegraph

Published:  28 July, 2008

August's most pressing question is where to find the best Sauvignon Blanc, says Susy Atkins. Her top tip is that "only those from 2007 (very sparkly and bright) or 2006 (a little softer, more mellow) should make it into your fridge this August". Recommendations include the 2007 Sauvignon Blanc Montana (£6.49, Tesco) and the 2006 Sauvignon Blanc Leyda (£8.25, Great Western Wine), which is spot on with "soft goat's cheese and ripe tomatoes".

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Pubs feel the heat as beer sales drop

Published:  28 July, 2008

Pubs were dealt a further blow today (July 28) as the British Beer and Pub Association (BBPA) reported beers sales were down 4.5% this quarter, compared with the same quarter last year.

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The Observer

Published:  28 July, 2008

Tim Atkin MW is weighing up the recent heavyweight tasting bout between the "quintessential pinstriped Englishman" Michael Broadbent and the "slightly vulgar American" Robert Parker. Bordeaux provided the battle ground with Broadbent favouring "reds with higher acidity, subtle oak and more tannin" while Parker prefers "big, plush, ripely textured numbers with lots of new wood". What did Atkins ultimately feel of Parker and Broadbent's tasting notes? "Much to my surprise, I found myself agreeing with the former far more often than the latter."

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Tiger Beer appointed exclusive distributors of Viru

Published:  25 July, 2008

Brand Independence Ltd is pleased to announce the appointment of Tiger Beer UK as exclusive UK distributors for their premium Baltic beer 'Viru'.

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Tapanappa Wines expands with new general manager

Published:  25 July, 2008

The board of Tapanappa Wines has appointed Xavier Bizot as general manager.

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Dolan joins Wyndham to boost Shiraz clout

Published:  25 July, 2008

Nigel Dolan, the award winning winemaker, has joined Wyndham Estate as chief winemaker.

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Auchentoshan Whisky launches new website

Published:  25 July, 2008

Auchentoshan Whisky has spearheaded its £0.5m brand investment with a newly launched website.

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Wines of Argentina tasting must broaden scope

Published:  25 July, 2008

This year's Wines of Argentina trade tasting is looking to cater for as broad as spectrum of visitors as possible, according to the trade body's UK director.

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Harpers.co.uk relaunches as TalkingDrinks.com

Published:  25 July, 2008

Wine & spirits website Harpers.co.uk has relaunched as TalkingDrinks.com.

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Financial Times

Published:  24 July, 2008

Jancis Robinson MW has "become increasingly aware of a new phenomenon in a worrying proportion of red wine". Although such wines smell of opulence they often leave her "palate feeling as though it has been energetically scoured by sandpaper". A number of theories are ventured to explain the syndrome but Robinson ominously rounds up "it would seem that there is no shortage of sandpaper beyond the grave".

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The Sunday Telegraph

Published:  24 July, 2008

The 2007 Viognier Stamford Brook (£5.99, Australia) is a "hugely fruity white, bursting with ripe peach," says Susy Atkins. Her second choice is the 2005 Botrytis Semillon (£5.99, Tesco) which has a "rich jamminess". "Botrytis is also known as 'noble rot', which I realise sounds horrid," admits Atkins, but readers should pursue both recommendations as long as they are chilled well before serving.

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The Sunday Times

Published:  24 July, 2008

Joanna Simon turns her attention to the Castel/Oddbins/Nicolas saga in her column this week.  However she remains unconvinced by some of the ramifications of the takeover. "All French wines are now bought by Nicolas in Paris. This may sound sensible, but the effect has been depressing," she laments. Ignoring French offerings, Simon highlights the 2007 Pinot Grigio Red Hill Estate (£9.99, Oddbins) for its "lively, appley, nutty and mineral" notes.

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The Independent

Published:  24 July, 2008

In these times of credit woe we should take note that Aldi has taken the "discount mantle" from Kwik Save, says Anthony Rose.  "Aldi's low wine prices are all the more remarkable, given that the euro is so strong and the government now takes £1.72 in tax on every bottle of wine," he adds. The 2007 Chardonnay Torrontes Tierra del Sol (£3.49) "would not disgrace the dinner table" while Aldi's flush shoppers might want to try the 2007 Latuilière Sancerre (£8.99) which "offers the requisite herbaceous quality to customers in search of a treat".

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The Times

Published:  24 July, 2008

"France, for all its failings, continues to set the standards for global fine wine production," Jane MacQuitty explains.  This was her response to a "Gallic-wine-hating reader" who complained that MacQuitty's pages were full of endless plugs for French wine. Particular current favourites include the "celery-scented style" 2007 Vin de Pays Cuvée Pêcheur (£3.69, Waitrose) and the 2005 Moulin à Vent, La Roche-Vineuse (£13.95, Berry Bros & Rudd).

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The Observer

Published:  24 July, 2008

Tim Atkin MW is back from his several-week hiatus and he is in a combative mood. "Castel's ownership of Oddbins has been a disaster," he rages, and the recent press tasting has done little to allay his fears.  Atkin's main bone of contention seems to be Alain Favereau, a Castel buyer, who "has no understanding whatsoever of what UK consumers (and wine writers) like to drink". Thankfully there are "one or two decent wines" remaining. As examples, he chooses the "herbal, aromatic, multi-dimensional blend" 2007 De Grendel Winifred (£9.59, Oddbins) and the 2006 Sauvignon Blanc Matahiwi Holly (£10.99, Oddbins) with its "remarkable complexity".

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Key spirits boost Pernod Ricard sales

Published:  24 July, 2008

Double digit growth for several of Pernod Ricard's key brands, particularly its premium spirits portfolio, has boosted full-year sales figures.

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PLB Beer picks up new accounts

Published:  24 July, 2008

PLB's Beer Division has won new listings in Sainsbury's and Booker C&C for Summer Lightning - the Premium Bottled Ale from Hop Back Brewery, which is represented by PLB in the Off-Trade.

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Absolut Vodka sale reaches completion

Published:  24 July, 2008

Pernod Ricard's purchase of Vin & Sprit (V&S), the company that sells Absolut Vodka, has been completed.

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Wine + appoints new team

Published:  23 July, 2008

Wine+, the on-trade show due to run for it's third year at London Olympia 3-4 February 2009., has restructured its management team.

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