Suppliers and retailers praise Australia tasting

31 January, 2014

Cambridge Wine Merchants owner Hal Wilson lauded the quality of recent Australian vintages after attending Wine Australia’s annual tasting.

Wilson, who was among 700 visitors to RHS Lindley Hall in London, said: “I love the 2012 vintage and I’ve been really excited by some of the whites by 2013.

“This is the major opportunity to taste Australian wine under one roof so it’s a key part of the year.”

Heavyweights like Accolade and Pernod Ricard were joined by a host of leading agencies and boutique brands, with around 1,000 Australian wines from 32 regions on offer.

Wine Australia’s UK director Yvonne May said: “The event highlights the diversity, both regionally and varietally, of a wine portfolio that continues to excite key players around the world.”

Accolade boss Paul Schaafsma said he was pleased with the number of visitors at the tasting and added: “It’s a good time of year to have it. It’s a busy time for the trade with business plans being agreed.

“We are positive about Australian wine. We have had a strong year. We are really pleased with the performance of our Australian portfolio – Hardy’s is up 14% in value and 10% in volume – and we are going to be investing very heavily to make sure it stays relevant through the line.”

The Wine Gang’s Tom Cannavan said enthusiasm for Australian wine in the UK has been reinvigorated.

“I bumped into loads of people who feel the same kind of energy about this event – it’s almost as if Australia is reawakening and it’s a brand new thing that’s coming into UK,” he said.

“Everyone’s excited and trying new things, trying new styles of wine, and there’s real kind of energy about it.”

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