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Howard Ripley embraces Central Europe

Published:  06 September, 2022

Howard Ripley Wines has taken the plunge in Central Europe, adding eight new producers from across the region to its portfolio.

The eight new growers being introduced to the UK are Gala (Czech Republic), Brhlovce (Slovakia), Cajkov (Slovakia), Marvla Tindo (Slovakia), Heimann (Hungary), Lenkey (Hungary, pictured), Benvenuti (Croatia), and Clai (Croatia).

Best known for specialising in Piedmont, Germany and Burgundy, the independent importer is very much ‘on trend’ with its new additions, having focused on “boutique producers making small lots of wines that express their unique terroir”.

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Buyer and ex-sommelier Ziggy Grinsberg explained that the foray into Central Europe “fits perfectly” with the ethos of Howard Ripley’s terroir-driven wine, with his interest underpinned by his Latvian heritage.

“We have focused on what comes naturally to these places – cool climate Frankovka (Blaufrankish) and Burgundian varieties in the north, inimitable Furmint and Harslevelu in Tokaj, Kadarka and Kekfrankos in Szekszard and trio of Malvasia Istarska, Terran and Refosk in Istria,” said Grinsberg.

The new range, sourced during a series of visits by Grinberg and fellow buyer Sebastian Thomas, is to be shown at a dedicated tasting in central London on 20 September, with tickets and more information available via