Bibendum shines a light on by-the-glass New World wines



28 October 2019

With some amazing premium wines that represent great value, Bibendum’s Best in Glass campaign could add some by-the-glass magic to your New World offering this autumn.

Do you do enough with your New World wines? Come on, be honest, the answer is probably 'no’. And Bibendum thinks that’s not just a shame, but also an opportunity lost. Why? Well, because there are some amazing wines out there for the money. To prove it, this summer Bibendum launched its 'Best in Glass: Southern Stars’ campaign, designed to shine a light on some of the classiest New World wines in its portfolio, and get venues pouring exciting bottles from Marlborough to Maipo.

New World Merchant of the Year 2019

What makes Bibendum’s New World wine offering so special? Only the fact that it won New World Merchant of the Year at this year’s Sommelier Wine Awards.'No other merchant managed to pick up Golds from seven New World countries,’ said SWA chairman Chris Losh. 'It was a powerhouse performance.’

The plan is to incentivise bars, hotels and restaurants to put on seriously good trade-up wines by the glass. For a limited period, it will be promoting some of the best producers from Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and South America to Bibendum customers at a price designed to help you increase your cash margin.

The prices run (mostly) from £10-£20, though there are some prestige bottles available too. The limited-offer incentive will allow you to put on some serious quality for your customers – wines that they will remember for years to come – and still make a margin to keep your accountant happy. This is the perfect opportunity to engage with consumers who are drinking less, but better quality.

'Some of these wines have a fair bit of age on them, too,' says Bibendum’s business development executive, Gergely Barsi Szabó. 'If people are going to spend a bit extra, then they want the best of everything, and with a bit of age these wines get super interesting.

The event kicked off with a packed, lively summer tasting and barbecue at Sager + Wilde in Hackney, and will run into the autumn, so contact your rep to find out what’s on offer.

Standouts from the Best in Glass tasting


You can imagine that someone who calls his wine label Rieslingfreak is excited by the grape. But just in case the message isn’t getting across, know that winemaker John Hughes was wearing a t-shirt with 'Revence of Riesling’ emblazoned on it at the tasting. He may even have a tattoo. We daren’t ask. Hughes’ family have vineyards in the Eden and Clare Valleys. They used to sell the fruit to bigger wineries, but created their Rieslingfreak label a decade ago. Currently, there are 1o wines in the range – all from different areas. Bibendum has taken on two to begin with: The Clare Valley version (Riesling #5) is slightly off -dry and described as a 'Riesling for 20-somethings to get behind’. But Imbibe liked the Rieslingfreak #4 Eden Valley 2018. From sandy, limestone soil, it’s fresh, dry and zesty with a touch of classical gently toasty Eden character. £17.41



Cool, wet and wild, it’s not easy making wine in Tasmania. But when you’ve fled war-torn Czechoslovakia (as Josef Chromy did at the age of 19), dodging guard dogs, minefields and trigger-happy soldiers on the way, a bit of mildew probably doesn’t seem such a big deal. He worked in the Tasmanian industry for decades, responsible for setting up many of the island’s best-known wineries before building his own at the ripe old age of 76. His wines show life and purity and the Josef Chromy Pinot Noir 2016 was a standout. Pale, aromatic spicy raspberries with a gentle grip on the finish. Great value too. £17.63


Prophet’s Rock winemaker Paul Pujol might have worked his first vintages in Marlborough, but his biggest influence comes from France. Having famously worked 13 vintages in six years, he has worked in Alsace, Languedoc, Sancerre and at Domaine Comte Georges de Vogüé. And the stint at one of the stars of Chambolle-Musigny, in particular, left its impression on him. Pujol is very much a 'less is more’ winemaker. A master of minimal extraction, his Pinots receive just one punch-down. A combination of Old World winemaking and New World fruit, there’s a definite purity and elegance to his wines. The Prophet’s Rock Home Vineyard Pinot Noir 2015 has plush strawberry and blue-fruit notes with a cedary edge and graphite on the finish. £30.55



Want to know what the '52' refers to on the label? It’s the age of the vines that went into this wine. One of the peculiarities of this family-owned estate is that they have a lot of old dry-farmed vines in the Helderberg 'golden triangle’. Winemaker Tertius Boshoff might be looking at experiments with the likes of Assyrtiko, Roussanne and Marsanne, but he’s also one of the acknowledged masters of old-vine Chenin in the Cape, their star white variety. This Stellenrust 52 Chenin Blanc is unashamedly rich and oaky with sun-filled orchard fruit backed up by creamy oak spice. It’s a good-natured tropical hug at a steal of a price. £14.45

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