First look - the shop selling vegan wine and vinyl!
PUBLISHED: 20:30 05 December 2018
Winyl sells vegan wine and vinyl
A new business in Manningtree is perfectly capturing the zeitgeist of 2018. Winyl, on South Street, is a passion project for owner Steve Tattam, combining his love of vinyl with vegan, organic and biodynamic wines.
For not only can you sip on and sample more than 20 vinos in store, but you can listen to, play and buy vinyl (from the classics to contemporary albums) too.
With more and more people choosing to go vegan, and with vinyl sales rising month on month, Winyl is bang on trend.
The shop takes Steve full circle in his career. He laughs that his first job was selling vinyl for Virgin Megastore in the late 80s where he worked for more than 20 years, seeing the evolution of music sales to CDs and MP3s before moving onto greener pastures.
“But in March this year I started thinking about my life,” Steve says, “and I reflected on when I was happiest. With the vinyl revival of the last few years I thought maybe, just maybe I can make a business of that and go back to what I really enjoyed in my career. I’ve also worked with beer and wine so I thought how cool it would be to sit and listen to records with wine. That’s how Winyl was born really.”
Despite having just 24 or so varieties of wine in stock at any time, Winyl offers one of the largest vegan selections in the east of England, ranging from £10. Unusually, all of them (except sparkling wine) are available to try in store, or purchase by the glass while you try your hand at spinning a track on the decks. “I really set out to seek quality vegan organic wines,” Steve explains of the collection. “If you go to the supermarket there aren’t really many, but I’ve found a few ranges which are excellent. Even better, they have unusual labels and really exciting artwork which draws you in – a bit like album covers really.”
Within the range is the brand Loxarel, produced in Spain. Unfiltered, organic and biodynamic, these wines are as natural as you can get, with the only sulphites and sugars in the bottles harnessed from the grapes themselves.
“The most popular wine we had when we first opened was Finca La Estacada’s Cabernet Franc called Hello World. It’s got a nice picture of a chick bursting out of an egg on the front. We sold out in three days and couldn’t get any more for three weeks – the whole country had sold out! It’s very spicy and heavy on the fruit with a bit of light tannin. Really powerful.”
A new brand added to the list is Bodegas Nodus from Spain. “The red – Chaval – is very light and still fruity. People who like French wine will tend to gravitate to that one. And we have a chardonnay/muscatel mix as well called En La Parra.”
Alongside wine, there’s now a range of vegan beers, plus natural juices from Barn Farm up the road for drivers.
“It’s going brilliantly well,” says Steve. “In particular the vinyl. The revival there is a bit of nostalgia. People would have ditched all their records but now they’re choosing to buy them again. There’s a movement around the sound quality. A lot of people use streaming but, while it’s useful, you don’t have that physical act of putting a needle down and the warmth of the sound. We’re all so busy and lead such stressful lives, that this is in some way about claiming time back. You can’t rush playing a record. It’s a really nice, tangible activity and that’s what we’re all about here.”
Steve’s favourite records? “I’ve been listening to The Good, The Bad and The Queen, the Damon Albarn album and also to Merryland – that’s been popular here. And another I’ve been listening to recently is a band called Art Brute. They’ve got really clever lyrics. It’s indie pop but so funny.”
What about for listening through without stopping?
“It’s got to be Pink Floyd’s Dark Side of the Moon. You can’t listen to that any other way. It has to be from start to finish.
“And for artwork I pick the Pixies album Dolittle which has a monkey on the front with its eyes burnt out. Funnily enough I used to use that as a bedtime picture for one of my children…but they turned out fine!”