Award-winning independent beer merchant Real Ale is opening a second shop in northwest London to build on the success of its flagship Twickenham store.

Sainsbury’s has seen gin sales grow 25% year-on-year and has bolstered its range with three new lines to capitalise on the trend.

Majestic has reported 5.7% like-for-like sales growth in its retail outlets and chief executive Rowan Gormley declared the business is now “past the tipping point”.

Old Mout has a new pack format to tap into the summer sharing occasion for cider.

Shepherd Neame has launched its first cider as the result of a partnership with Aspall.

The Carlsberg Group has committed to eliminating carbon emissions and halving water usage at its breweries by 2030 as part of its new sustainability programme.

Cono Sur plans to celebrate its status as Official Wine of Le Tour de France with a new limited edition range of labels.

Sainsbury’s has bolstered its craft beer and cider offering across its Northern Ireland estate by introducing 28 new lines from a range of small producers.

Myliko Wines has strengthened its portfolio with Armenia Wines and Fine Wines from Grand Tokaj of Hungary.

San Miguel has revealed its summer promotional activity, tailored specifically for the off-trade.

An independent organisation set up to promote sensible drinking is seeking changes to labelling rules on no- and low-alcohol drinks.

Borough Wines & Beers is ramping up its focus on its wholesale arm and Borough Wines Corners concept, and on the retail side has just opened its ninth store.

JF Hillebrand is expanding its UK business. The ultimate logistics partner works with retailers to fine wine merchants regardless of their size or logistical requirement.

Britain drank a third of all the Prosecco produced last year, which is more than any other nation in the world.

Absolut is entering the ready-to-drink (RTD) market with a premium canned range.

Carlsberg UK has appointed Alistair Gaunt as vice president for its National Sales Business Unit.

Beer Hawk is expanding its homebrew range by becoming the exclusive stockist of Northern Brewer in the UK.

Lidl UK has reported a 50% spike in sales of rosé ahead of this weekend’s National Rosé Day.

Kleine Zalze is getting a refreshed look in a move designed to reflect the premiumisation of South African wine.

Connoisseur Estates has added new agencies from Chile and Spain, and has already secured listings for these wines.

Mouton Cadet has made its debut as the Official Wine of the 35th America’s Cup.

Bottle shop Kill the Cat has announced plans to brew its own beers to serve on tap and hopes to open a second store next year.

Lidl UK has launched three new premium whiskies in time for Father’s Day.

Two industry experts have set up a new sales, distribution and marketing agency for premium spirits.

Hawkes has launched London’s first ever ‘urban cidery’, which it says is the latest step in its “mission to change the face of UK cider forever”.

Dunnet Bay Distillery is gearing up to launch its Summer Edition Rock Rose Gin.

The Co-op has teamed up with neighbouring Blackjack Brewery to create an unusual ‘breakfast’ pale ale, especially for Manchester Beer Week.

Hush Heath Estate in Kent has launched two Sparkling English Apple Wines, which it anticipates will appeal to Prosecco fans.

Brewdog has reported its total UK sales increased by 97% in 2016, while its overall turnover for the year reached £72m.

Vins de Bordeaux will open its first ever pop-up wine bar at Broadgate this summer.

Gonzalez Byass UK has created a sparkling sherry-based drink specifically for the UK market.

Enotria&Coe has announced it will take on the UK distribution for Hattingley Valley.

Rhone Valley Vineyards, France’s second largest AOC wine area, has unveiled its new Cotes du Rhone ad campaign for the UK market, accompanied by a new strapline: ‘Everyday Sophistication’.

Freixenet, the well-known Cava producer, is set to launch a Prosecco into the UK this summer.

Yalumba has blended Coonawarra Cabernet with Barossa Shiraz to create a £225 “super claret” designed to honour its rich history and experimental nature.

DRN, Origin Wines and Electric Sky Wines took over One Belgravia in the capital for a glittering party after day two of the London Wine Fair. 

The wine trade can be the poster boy for international trade relations after Britain leaves the EU, according to the outgoing director of the London Wine Fair.

Aldi has launched an in-store craft beer festival that has seen it bolster its range with 16 brews from across the UK.

Butcombe Brewing Company is launching a range of sci-fi-inspired canned beers as it looks to extend out of its classic style into craft beer.

The My Generation Beer Co has expanded its offering on the back of securing a national supermarket deal with Asda.

Dom Pérignon has released its vintage 2009 cuvée and chef de cave Richard Geoffroy is raving about its quality.

Kopparberg has extended its fruit cider range with the launch of a Blueberry & Lime variant.

Blossom Hill has launched an on-pack promotion offering consumers the chance to win discounts on bestselling make-up brands like Rimmel and Clinique.

UK agents that shun the London Wine Fair deserve to be questioned by the brands they represent about a missed opportunity, according to Patrick McGrath MW.

Morgenrot has added to its world craft beer portfolio with the “highly sought-after and utterly unique” Pang Pang beers from Sweden.

Strongbow is launching an on-pack promotion offering the chance to win thousands of festival-related prizes.

The founder of a British premium drinks business has successfully trademarked her liqueur in order to protect both its quality and provenance.

Halewood Wines & Spirits plans to shake up the tonic category with its latest launch.

Conviviality has reported sales nearly doubled to £1.56bn for the year ending 30 April 2017.

Robinsons has revealed a new look for its Old Tom range as well as a new variant, which is set to join the iconic beer line up.

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The shops that stand out from the madding crowd

The judges met last week to sort out the winners in the independent categories of our 2018 Drinks Retailing Awards. The results are top secret until the awards dinner on February 6 but it’s giving nothing away to report that the overall standard of those that will be revealed in the shortlist of finalists in the January issue of DRN is higher than it’s ever been.

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