Oz wine sales in rude health ahead of UK events

More than 60 Australian winemakers will touch down on British soil this month for a series of trade events as the nation seeks to build on impressive growth in the UK.

Australian wine sales are up 4% in volume and 3% in value to £1.2 billion in the UK off-trade (Nielsen, year to April 2015).

It is the only top-six country in growth and is by far the best-selling country of origin in the take-home market, surging well ahead of second- placed Italy.

This month sees winemakers arrive for Wine Australia’s Premium Australia tasting on September 29, while Liberty and Awin Barratt Siegel are both holding Australia tastings in London on September 8.

Wine Australia’s regional director for the UK, Laura Jewell MW, said it is great that UK buyers will be able to meet such a large contingent of Australians this month.

She said: “It’s crucial that winemakers and principals visit markets such as the UK so together we can tell the Australian stories and show off the personalities behind every bottle of Australian wine.

“It will be great to have so many talented Australians in the same city this month.”

De Bortoli’s chief winemaker, Steve Webber will be among the Aussies flocking to London to promote premium Australian wine this month.

He said: “The UK is an important market for Australia and is a major influence on wine opinion and review the world over.

“The UK market is expecting compelling, textural, wines of place from all producers and countries, something that we feel the new Australia is doing, and doing well.”

Other visiting winemakers at the Wine Australia tasting, which takes place at Australia House, include Tyrrell Wines’ Bruce Tyrrell, Grosset’s Jeff Grosset and Vanya Cullen from Cullen Wines.

ABS’s inaugural Australia’s Best Kept Secrets tasting will feature a small, eclectic group of boutique, family-owned wineries from across Australia’s best growing areas, none of whom have previously exported to the UK and all with an annual production of less than 10,000 nine-litre cases. They all come with an rrp of more than £15.

The tasting takes place at One Great George Street in London, while the Liberty Australia tasting is across town at Glaziers Hall. It will showcase more than 100 premium Australian wines.