05 March, 2010

We find them very useful – really it’s the main opportunity we get to taste the wines. Everything we buy we buy on taste and we won’t stock wines unless we have tried and liked? them. Tastings are absolutely essential and they also allow us to catch up with our suppliers.”?Shane Dunning?Wood Winters??Bridge of Allan, Stirling??“I don’t find them all that useful – we get enough visits from reps, so it’s not essential to go. It’s good to go to tastings to try new vintages of wine that we sell – and if people are flying in from around the world it’s useful to meet them around the same time, but you rarely find anything that you’re not looking for.”?Dominic Lockyer?Fareham Wine Cellar?Fareham, Hampshire??“They are essential and very good for us. The fact that some big names have dropped out of the L?IWF is neither here nor there for independent retailers? as, dare I say it, it makes space for more interesting people. We can’t go to every fair as we’d never get any work done, but we try to go to as many as possible. LIWF is a very important date in the diary and SITT was fantastic. The country-specific stuff like Wines of Chile, Australia, Burgundy and New Zealand are all really good too.”?Stefan Botfield?City Beverage Company?Hoxton, London??“It’s unlikely I’ll go to the LIWF this year because it is just too brand-orient?ed. The market I’m in is much more eclectic and small. I’ll be attending the Burgundy tasting in France as I’m trying to get a range of wines that no one else has? – at affordable prices.”?Patrick Rosin?Smart Wines?Ascot, Berkshire??“I find them of limited use. We’d rather have samples sent to us here rather than go to tastings. If your money is good, people will send them.”?Will Bentley?Bentley’s Wine Merchants?Ludlow?Shropshire

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Richard Hemming MW: beware inverse snobbery

Few things can bring communal pleasure so intimately as wine. Apart from a hot tub, perhaps. Sport can trigger mass jubilation, film gives us shared empathy, but wine has a nigh-unique ability to bestow conviviality among us through a shared bottle – which makes it especially galling that we spend so much time divided over it.

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Is blended Scotch overshadowed by single malt in retailers?

  • Yes
  • No
  • Don't know