2013 February

Spar launches beer festival

28 February, 2013

Spar is promoting the likes of San Miguel, Peroni and Tiger in its first-ever world beer festival in stores.

The officers that would be charged with enforcing the Government’s planned minimum unit price on alcohol have criticised the scheme.

Ehrmanns held its first-ever portfolio tasting in central London to cap a month that has seen it launch a new website and put new sales, buying and marketing teams in place.

Brancott Estate has teamed up with National Geographic to launch a competition designed to celebrate and reward curiosity.

Enotria took over the Saatchi Gallery in London’s Sloane Square for its annual tasting yesterday.

Nyetimber’s English sparkling wine will be served during Paris Fashion Week for the first time tomorrow.

Chinese wine on offer at LIWF

25 February, 2013

Buyers attended the London International Wine Fair in May will be able to taste Chinese wine for the first time in the fair’s 33-year history.

Diageo believes its new range of frozen cocktails will open up “huge” sales opportunities in the off-trade.

The managing director of Mentzendorff has urged retailers not to be panicked into dropping the top ends of their wine ranges as the consumer purse continues to tighten.

Forget cannabis, make wine

21 February, 2013

The world’s first Lebanese Fairtrade wine – hailing from a region historically more famous for producing cannabis – has landed in the UK.

The WSTA has warned that a minimum unit price on alcohol would boost crime, harm UK business and damage the health of consumer in its latest attack on the government plans.

Budvar aims to increase its UK business by 40% after its new £3.6 million canning line started churning out thousands of cans at its Ceske Budejovice brewery this week.

Jacob’s Creek is offering drinkers the chance to win a trip to Australia as part of a new promotion called the True Character Series.

Pernod Ricard has given coconut-flavoured rum Malibu a facelift including a new logo, bottle shape and type font.

A Methuselah of Taittinger Champagne was signed by stars including George Clooney, Ben Affleck and Anne Hathaway at the Bafta Awards and will be auctioned for charity.

Sharp’s brewery is rolling out the first of its Connoisseur’s Choice beers of the year – a range designed to partner food.

The Champagne House which produces Tesco’s Finest Premier Cru and Finest Grand Cru Vintage has opened a new £10 million cellar.

Golden Virginia range revamped

20 February, 2013

Imperial Tobacco has overhauled its Golden Virginia brand with a new name and pack design for its core and smooth ranges.

Brancott Estate has launched an ultra-premium Marlborough Sauvignon Blanc as it seeks to cement New Zealand’s status as a region that focuses on quality rather than quantity.

Dutch brewer Heineken has appointed David Forde as the new head of its UK business – a week after managing director Stefan Orlowski announced he would leave to head its Americas division.

Simon Baile has done a deal to buy back the bulk of his collapsed Excellar off-licence chain from its administrator.

Flogging a dead horse

15 February, 2013

How hungry would you have to be to eat a spaniel? What about a monkey, a camel or a rat? During the siege of their city in 1870, starving Parisians consumed all those things and more. Horsemeat, first introduced four years previously as what the historian Alistair Horne called “a cheap provender for the poor”, became a comparative delicacy. To this day, it is much favoured in France, where boucheries chevalines still exist, as well as Italy and Belgium.

Full of southern promise

15 February, 2013

Alentejo has much to boast about. It is home to Portugal’s biggest selling brand, Herdade do Esporão (according to sales director Nicolas Giannone), it commands the biggest share of the domestic market and highest average retail price (€3.88) of any Portuguese region (Nielsen, year to July 31, 2010) and major UK players Sogrape, João Portugal Ramos and Herdade do Esporão confirm sales here are growing.

Fighting Fit Languedoc

15 February, 2013

he Languedoc is a fiery region of bullfighting, rugby and tough, cassoulet-fuelled farmers tending scorched plains, but it has always suffered from an inferiority complex when it comes to wine. The “wine factory” tag has dogged the world’s largest wine-producing region for decades, and noisy stepsisters Burgundy, Bordeaux and Côtes du Rhône have historically left it more downtrodden than Cinderella on a bad-hair day.

Fighting Fit Languedoc

15 February, 2013

The Languedoc is a fiery region of bullfighting, rugby and tough, cassoulet-fuelled farmers tending scorched plains, but it has always suffered from an inferiority complex when it comes to wine. The “wine factory” tag has dogged the world’s largest wine-producing region for decades, and noisy stepsisters Burgundy, Bordeaux and Côtes du Rhône have historically left it more downtrodden than Cinderella on a bad-hair day.

Wine buyers from across the globe pushed their palates to the limit in a bid to find hidden gems among more than 1,500 wines on offer at the Sud de France tasting in Montpellier.

Next month 2,000 UK buyers will travel to Düsseldorf to sample wines and spirits from around the globe at the world’s largest wine fair.

Retailers lose faith in police

15 February, 2013

Shops are spending more than ever on protecting their businesses from crime – but feel they are not getting enough support in doing so from the police and politicians.

Vodka bootlegger is jailed

15 February, 2013

A West Midlands man has been jailed for 12 months for his part in a fake vodka-making operation in Birmingham city centre.

English wine innovation

15 February, 2013

A Sussex vineyard is planning to bring what it claims is a new concept in English wine to the market in 2016.