Pioneering training move
Published:  09 August, 2007

The owners of two south London wine shops have travelled to South Africa to choose their first apprentice for a new training scheme.

Kate Thal, and her husband Jude Liddle, who own the Green & Blue stores, will pick one participant who will train and work for their business, before returning to work as a sommelier in South Africa.

The initiative was set up after it became clear that there were not enough trained sommeliers working in South Africa where wine tourism is becoming big business.

For six months, the trainee will work alongside South-African born Thal, who will teach them about tasting and buying wine for the shop. During the second half of the year they will work at one of Gordon Ramsay's restaurants.

Green & Blue's second shop - in Clapham - opened on July 10. The store in Bedford Road has a similar format to the flagship store in East Dulwich.




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Talking terroir

When Bordeaux was in fashion, it seemed almost logical that we should fetishise winemakers. Here were people responsible for brilliant acts of blending, across large estates and multiple grape varieties, including superstars such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot. These days, fashion has moved on and pinot noir is ascendant. As a result, the star of the winemaker has fallen and we find ourselves following a new star in the sky: terroir.

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