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The Laughing Heart, now nearly two years old, is a business comprising different segments that operate successfully together. It aims to appeal to those who enjoy fine wine in a restaurant environment or to take home, supported by various in-store wine and food events. Founder, Charlie Mellor, speaks to DRN:

Independent Spirit of Bath

17 October, 2018

Independent Spirit of Bath started in 2013 when Chris Scullion and Christian Morrish met and decided the city was missing a dedicated spirits venue. Sonya Hook talks to Chris Scullion:

Simon Taylor started the Stone, Vine & Sun wine business in 2002 after buying a mail-order list from an existing wine business that had closed down. The company evolved over the years and it now has a number of private clients, a wholesale arm and a shop.

Nickolls & Perks

14 August, 2018

Will Gardener started working for the family business in the mid 1980s, straight after leaving college. Soon after he joined, the company decided to expand the business nationally via mail order, wholesale and private clients, while making more of retail premises in the Midlands town of Stourbridge. Today six family members work there, all with a different area of expertise. 


16 July, 2018

Friarwood has been trading from its Parsons Green shop since 1967. It started out as 100% wholesale and until 2000 specialised in Bordeaux wines. Ben Carfagnini, the company’s owner since 2015, wanted to place a greater focus on the retail side, and as part of this the team opened a second store in Wimbledon Village last October. Head buyer Auriane d’Aramon tells DRN more about the company’s change of direction. 

Mill Hill Wines

16 July, 2018

Mill Hill Wines was established 35 years ago and is now the longest serving shop on The Broadway in Mill Hill, north London. The store was owned and set up by Laurence Hanison until his retirement. Former employee Andy Smith took over the reins in January 2017. The business offers a selection of more than 1,500 wines, spirits, craft beers and cigars.