Chalié Richards stakes age claim

24 April, 2009

Chalié Richards has created a trade advertising campaign to market itself as the UK's oldest wine merchant.

The Chalié Brothers wine merchant, general merchant and banker business

started up in 1700. Berry Bros & Rudd dates back to 1698

but, according to Chalié, it originally sold provisions, exotic spices, tea and coffee, and didn't trade in fine wines and

whisky until after 1700.

"Chalié Richards' continued success for over 300 years is a result of the relationships

built over the years, combined with an outstanding portfolio of

brands," the company said in a statement. "By adapting to new market forces , Chalié Richards is proud to be the UK's oldest wine merchant

and still going strong."

Simon Berry

of Berry Bros & Rudd

said: "Chalié Richards

is quite right that the business at St James's Street probably didn't sell wine in 1698 - it sold tea and coffee, which were the fashionable (and expensive) drinks of the time.

" They are forgetting the other branch of the business - my family

were

wine merchants in Exeter in the 1690s and

married into the St James's business

100 years later.

So we

believe

we are the oldest wine merchants in the country."




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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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