English wine sales soar at Waitrose

30 April, 2015

Waitrose has reported a 177% annual increase in English wine sales and now claims to account for three bottles in every five sold in the UK.

The retailer has a 7.7% share of the wine market, but said it now has a 60% of the English wine category.

It stocks more than 100 wines from England and Wales, by far the widest range available in a UK supermarket, and hailed the performance of large producers Nyetimber and Ridgeview along with upcoming boutique wineries.

Rebecca Hull MW, English wine buyer at Waitrose, said: “The success of English wine is a culmination of dedication and effort from some talented winemakers across the country who have gradually built the reputation of our wines from the ground up. We are thrilled that our market share is so high, and this is down to our customer's passion for locally grown produce.

“We make some delicious, award-winning wines in this country, including on our own farm in Hampshire, and I can confidently say our range is packed full of true UK wine heroes. There is a real momentum among the English wine industry right now, as new plantings come on stream and English winemakers perfect their art, so it's an exciting time to be involved in English wine and we're truly excited about the future. We'll be launching lots more new English wines over the coming months.”




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Talking terroir

When Bordeaux was in fashion, it seemed almost logical that we should fetishise winemakers. Here were people responsible for brilliant acts of blending, across large estates and multiple grape varieties, including superstars such as cabernet sauvignon and merlot. These days, fashion has moved on and pinot noir is ascendant. As a result, the star of the winemaker has fallen and we find ourselves following a new star in the sky: terroir.

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