Diageo is using cutting edge technology to target consumers with Smirnoff cider ads when the mercury hits 19°C.

Ethical beer brand Toast has gained a listing at the UK’s largest retailer for its Much Kneaded craft lager and Bloomin’ Lovely session IPA.

Tom King joins WSTA board

21 August, 2017

Treasury Wine Estates’ European managing director has joined the board of the Wine & Spirits Trade Association.

Ardbeg has announced that its highly anticipated new expression, An Oa, is launching next month and will join its permanent range.

Cognac exports to the UK grew 3.6% in the year to July 31, 2017, and it held onto its position as the fourth largest export market for the spirit.

The International Bulk Wine & Spirits Show in London has been pushed back a month to new dates of February 26-27.

Morgenrot has added two IPAs from Swedish brewery Pang Pang to its range in a bid to cause “mayhem” in the UK craft beer market.

Diageo has continued the pipeline of new releases under its Cîroc vodka with the launch of a French Vanilla variant.

Majestic Wine has appointed former Sainsbury’s buyer Julie Buckley as senior buyer responsible for New Zealand, Spain and Burgundy.

A peloton of riders raised £13,000 in a charity bike ride that honoured the life and times of Dan Townsend, the late managing director at Treasury Wine Estates.

San Miguel is seeking to build on impressive UK growth figures by rolling out a wider portfolio of SKUs, including gluten-free and no-alcohol variants. 

Virgin Wines is celebrating the launch of its new website and IT platform – the culmination of a two-year project – and the company said it is now ready to offer customers a more personal service. 

A distiller that set up an independent bottle shop and bar to help boost sales of its gin has opened a second outlet as it proved so popular with locals. 

Retailers believe the south west of England is lacking in premium wine destinations and are racing to establish venues in key sites across the region. 

The team behind There’s a Beer for That has called upon smaller retailers from across the UK to work with it to spread the word about great beer.

The rapid pace of specialist beer shop openings is showing no signs of slowing down, with new stores springing up across the UK this summer. 

Cheshire-based wine merchant Corks Out is looking to grow the business from its current estate of five stores to a total of 10 over the next few years. 

Britain’s largest online beer retailer is ramping up its wholesale arm and has launched a new website targeting bars, restaurants and retailers. 

Two online beer retailers have revealed ambitious expansion plans as they seek to cope with increasing demand.

Retailers have been warned to invest heavily in their digital offerings as online could soon overtake the convenience channel as the easiest way for shoppers to buy beers, wines and spirits. 

De Bortoli Wines has revealed three new blends, which have been created after years of experimenting with alternative grape varieties from its King Valley, Yarra Valley and Riverina vineyards.

Chris Porter is taking over from retiring incumbent David Cox as chief executive of drinks trade charity The Benevolent.

WH Palmer has launched Palmers London Dry Gin to celebrate the Palmer family’s 200th year of distilling. This is the producer’s first eponymous-brand gin produced at its Langley Distillery in the Midlands.

Aldi has released a new Featherweight collection of wines to address the trend for lower calorie and lower alcohol wines.

Innis & Gunn increased turnover by 22% last year to more than £14.3m, with gross profit also up 25% to £8.5m.

Majestic has enlisted three celebrity winemakers to create their own ‘signature dish’, which will then be bottled and sold in stores.

Rum Sixty-Six has launched two new expressions: Extra Old and Cask Strength, which are aged for six and 12 years respectively.

Sales of sparkling wine grew 12% in the last year, according to the latest figures from the Wine & Spirit Trade Association (WSTA).

The Government needs to “get a grip” and produce a clear plan to prevent Brexit chaos, according to the Wine and Spirit Trade Association.

Loch Lomond Whiskies has unveiled two new single malts from its Island Collection.

McColl’s Retail Group has reached an agreement with Morrisons Supermarkets to supply McColl’s growing estate of 1300 convenience stores and 350 newsagents.

Fentimans has launched a canned range of its most popular botanically brewed flavours.

Hambledon Vineyard in Hampshire has been approved as an official programme provider for the Wine & Spirits Education Trust (WSET) and will be offering WSET Level 1 and Level 2 courses starting this Autumn.

Buckingham Schenk has launched a new Malbec blend from Vinalba.

Brighton Gin has created 400 limited edition bottles of its gin designed to celebrate Brighton Pride.

Jamaica Inn Black Ginger Rum has been “quietly launched” into its Cornwall heartlands, by premium spirits distributor, Mangrove.

Xeco Wines is on a mission to give sherry “a total reinvention” by taking it into the aperitif scene.

Kokoro Gin has launched a miniature bottle of its Japanese-inspired London Dry Gin.

Aston Manor’s sales grew by 4% to £113 million in 2016 and it now believes it offers a breadth of range that is unrivalled in the cider category.

Diageo has reported that it grew market share in the UK off-trade and on-trade in the past year, largely thanks to the strength of Baileys, Guinness and Gordon’s.

Amazon finished top of the pile as retailers completed a clean sweep in a survey designed to find the UK’s top brands for customer service.

A prolonged summer heatwave sparked 19% growth in cider sales and a 17% rise in sparkling wine sales in the grocery channel this summer.

Online drinks retailer 31Dover.com has appointed former Naked Wines sales and marketing director James Bagley as its new chief executive.

The UK auction market for single malt Scotch malt whisky has enjoyed a record breaking three months, with sales surpassing £6 million between April and June.

Fine wine merchant BI Wine said British clients are undeterred by the weak sterling rate after reporting its most successful en primer campaign in seven years.

Commentator Steve Topple has ripped into “fundamentally flawed” research suggesting alcohol abuse will kill 63,000 people in the next five years if punitive measures are not slapped on alcohol.

The researcher responsible for a Guardian front page suggesting a soaring alcohol misuse epidemic could kill 63,000 people said the real headline should have been: “slow news day produces unexpected headlines”.

The public health lobby has called for off-licence hours to be cut to 10am-10pm, the reintroduction of the duty escalator, minimum unit pricing of 50p and tighter regulations on alcohol advertising.

Outspoken Wetherspoons boss Tim Martin will join Lord Price, the Minister of State for International Trade, on stage at the annual WSTA Conference.

Tesco has launched a new Hungarian range across stores nationally and online.

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Faith in fakes

One of the most fascinating stories in wine, fit to stand alongside the Judgement of Paris, is that of Rudy Kurniawan, a man who managed to fool friends, auction houses and experts into believing they were drinking some of the world’s most expensive wines.

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