Adnams toasts top wine title

SOUTHWOLD-based Adnams has scored regional and national success in the International Wine Challenge awards.For the third time in four years, the Suffolk company was named East of England Wine Merchant of the year at the annual IWC event, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London's Park Lane.

SOUTHWOLD-based Adnams has scored regional and national success in the International Wine Challenge awards.

For the third time in four years, the Suffolk company was named East of England Wine Merchant of the year at the annual IWC event, held at the Grosvenor House Hotel in London's Park Lane.

And for the first time it then went one better by claiming the national Large Independent Merchant of the Year title, a category open to all independent wine merchants with more than five employees.

Adnams, which was also among the runners-up in the On-line Retailer category, has been selling wine for more than 30 years, alongside its brewing and pubs businesses and its successful Southwold hotels.


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However, the wine retail business has been expanded significantly over the past year, with the Cellar & Kitchen Store format developed in Southwold having been rolled out to four other locations, and this was a key factor in the company's recognition in the IWC awards.

The judges commented: “A quality wine offering and excellent promotional literature has given Adnams their success this year. Their expansion in the East of England suggests their superior service will reach an even wider audience in the near future.”

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Rupert Farquharson, Adnams' director of retail, said: “We are extremely proud to receive these internationally-recognised awards. We are delighted that we have maintained the top spot in East Anglia for the third time, fighting off the stiff competition that exists in the East of England.

“The expansion of our retail offer through the development of the Cellar & Kitchen stores enabled us to win the national award of Large Independent Wine Merchant of the Year. This is a highly prestigious award and is a great boost as we continue the roll-out of stores in throughout the region.”

Besides Southwold, Adnams now has Cellar & Kitchen stores in Woodbridge, Harleston, Holkham and Stamford and three more are due to open by the end of 2007, in Hadleigh, Saffron Walden and Holt.

The original Southwold store, located behind the Crown Hotel, is also due to relocate in just over a year's time to new, purpose-built premises as part of the redevelopment of Adnams's former distribution site, now replaced by its award-winning eco-friendly depot just outside the town.

Adnams won the Large Independent award ahead of Philglas & Swiggot of London and Stone, Vine & Sun from Twyford, near Winchester and the East of England regional award ahead of The Flying Corkscrew, from Water End, near Leighton Buzzard, and Flagship Wines of St Albans.

On-line category was won by Berry Bros & Rudd, of Basingstoke, the Small Independent winner was The Secret Cellar from Tunbridge Wells, the Supermarket category was won by Tesco and the High Street Chain of the Year title went to Majestic Wine, which also took the overall Merchant of the Year award.

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