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Cambridge Wine Merchants opens former Wine Rack store

Published:  07 June, 2010

Independent retailer Cambridge Wine Merchants has bought a former Wine Rack store in Cambridge.


Supermarkets jump to best sales performance in 2010

Published:  26 May, 2010

Sales across UK supermarkets increased by over 3% in the last month, the first time this year the sector has seen such growth over a four week period.


Waitrose recruits new drinks chief from Tesco

Published:  20 April, 2010

Pierpaolo Petrassi MW has left Tesco to head up the BWS department at Waitrose.


Tesco and Morrisons licences reviewed

Published:  04 March, 2010

Tesco and Morrisons face licence reviews in Scotland after a publican accused them of breaching the law with "irresponsible drinks promotions".


New Taste - Feb 26, 2010

Published:  03 March, 2010

A new rosé Champagne and a sparkling Moscato are among this week's new drinks releases.


First promotion for rescued Wine Racks

Published:  07 December, 2009

All of the Wine Rack stores saved from administration by Venus Wine & Spirit are to hold in-store tastings this Saturday (December 12) on a range of promotional wines.


Wine Rack managers gather at Vinopolis

Published:  03 December, 2009

Wine Rack managers are gathering at Vinopolis today (Thursday) for their first formal meeting with their new owners.


Further Champagne discounts at Morrisons

Published:  02 December, 2009

Morrisons is making further cuts to the prices of leading Champagne brands.


More FQR stores close - but Wine Rack lives on

Published:  30 November, 2009

A further 391 First Quench stores are to close - but there is good news about the future of the Wine Rack brand.


Catherine Monahan, Clink! Wines comment

Published:  27 November, 2009

As the trade collectively winces from the losses, we cannot help but ask: What will the state of the off-licence business be over time? What impact will Thresher's demise have on the industry? Paradoxically, in the fullness of time, could this disaster be a good thing for the industry?


Lidl leads the way on Champagne deals

Published:  25 November, 2009


A Champagne price war looks set to break out pre-Christmas, with Lidl the first supermarket to make a sub-£10 offer.


The German discount chain ha



Morrisons slashes price of Champagne

Published:  19 November, 2009

Morrisons is cutting the cost of some Champagnes to below half price, including Bollinger at £17.95.


Waitrose´s Howard-Sneyd warns of "catastrophic" future

Published:  13 November, 2009

The future of wine retailing in the UK is at a crossroads and if it follows the wrong path it could be "catastrophic" for the industry, warned Waitrose´s Justin Howard-Sneyd speaking at today´s Wine Future 09 in Rioja.


Waitrose sweeps convenience market

Published:  25 September, 2009

UK supermarket chain Waitrose is poised to move into the convenience market pinned on new deals with Welcome Break and Boots and in a move that could double the number of its grocery stores.


Waitrose buyers invite customers on trips

Published:  16 September, 2009

Waitrose wine buyers plan to take consumers on organised wine and gourmet tours in an attempt to educate them about their wine range.


Wines in the press - September 11-13

Published:  15 September, 2009


For a taste of "summer and winter in a single gulp", Victoria Moore suggests Pineau des Charentes, because "it has the combination of fresh harvest fruit and throat-burning Cognac".


Wines in the press - September 4-6

Published:  08 September, 2009



Victoria Moore is disputing the latest research that says we have fallen out of love with Gallic wine now it has dropped to fourth place in the league tables of the wine we drink.


Moore's opinion is that much of the wine we drink is supplied by the top ten brands and says "comparing Blossom Hill to, say, a good £5 Côtes du Rhône is like comparing a turkey twizzler to my mum's shepherd's pie".


She asked market analysts AC Neilsen to tell her what would happen to the league table if they discounted sales of the leading 10 brands.


The result was that France came out on top, with Italy a close second Australia third, South Africa fourth, and the US a lagging fifth.


Moore says "this tells me that wine lovers are still entranced by French wine".



Jonathan Ray says he feels he is getting old because his godchildren have grown up "so blindingly fast".


He reminisces to when he was working at Berrys and was able to make use of the staff rates and lay down the odd case for them. "But as my godchildren have matured so have the wines," he says." Indeed, a couple of them are a wee bit too mature, not to say over the hill."


Former colleague of his - Tom Cave of Berrys says the best time to lay down wines for godchildren is when they are around ten-years-old: "The trouble is that godparental pressure means you have to take something tangible to the christening."


He says that Port ages better than Claret, but adds it doesn't keep its value so well. "My advice is to spend a minimum of £200 a case and to trade things as you go along."




Anthony Rose is scratching beneath the surface of Croatian wines and says it becomes clear that Croatia has a diverse indigenous wine culture whose dry whites and reds, as well as its sparkling and sweet wines, have the potential to add significantly to the wine styles we enjoy in the UK.


Rose explains that the Dalmatian coast is home to refreshingly crisp, full-flavoured dry whites made from Malvazija Istarska which he says have a special affinity with the local seafood.


And further down the Dalmatian coast, Plavac Mali is Croatia's main red grape variety that produces "richly flavoured wines with aromas and flavours of dark fruits like black cherry, plum and blackberry".


Croatia's other principal dry white grape variety is Gra?evina which Rose says, is grown in the hillside vineyards of Kutjevo where it produces high-quality dry aromatic whites full of juicy apple and citrus flavours.


Rose asks: "Is it too much to hope that before long we'll be able to enjoy Tesco Finest Gra?evina, Asda Extra Special Malvazija and Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Plavac Mali?"



Tim Atkin was surprised at two wine-related stories that appeared while he was on holiday and says if they'd been published on April 1, they would have made plausible April Fools.

He explains that both yarns originated in Italy and were partly about wine, money and sex.

The first covered the possible use of wine as collateral for bank loans. He comments that the idea even has the backing of the Italian agriculture minister and the chairman of the Banca Popolare di Vicenza.

But Atkin says it wont work. "For a simple reason: wineries that owe the banks lots of cash tend to be those that can't sell their wine at a decent price. And the reason for that? It's invariably crap."

He explains that the second tale "is even more bizarre".


Doctors at the University of Florence have published a "scientific study" about the link between female sexuality and red wine consumption. And have chosen to publish it in the Journal of Sexual Medicine.

The researchers interviewed 800 women between the ages of 18 and 50, asking them to fill in a questionnaire to determine their Female Sexual Function Index.


Atkin comments "who says romance is on its last legs in Italy, eh?

The Times


Jane MacQuitty is exploring wines to drink with curry.


She says "strange though it sounds, the spices used in most curries are very wine-friendly".


The best all purpose red she endorses is Beaujolais because of its tart acidity and minimal tannin and recommends Sainsbury's Taste the Difference Georges Duboeuf 2007, £5.99.


For a white to go with Thai green curry, MacQuitty suggests the "zesty, juicy, lime peel-scented," Vin de Pays des Côtes de Gascogne NV, Sainsburys £3.79.



Bordeaux Wine Council teams up with Lovefilm

Published:  18 August, 2009

The Bordeaux Wine Council and have teamed up with a number of major supermarkets in an a new promotional initiative.


Wines in the press - August 14-16

Published:  18 August, 2009

The Guardian

Whirrrr; or, more accurately, crunch-clack, isn't as satisfying as a pop, but increasingly this is the sound we hear when we open a wine bottle, says Victoria Moore.


The Pink Pound

Published:  17 August, 2009

Harpers Wine & Spirit devised the ultimate rosé tasting to gauge reaction from the trade.