International Wine Challenge Awards Dinner. The winner is...
The Wine Industry was dressed to the nines on Thursday night at the annual IWC Awards Dinner. With Trophy winners announced, it was a night to take stock and see how the land is lying. Marks & Spencer won the top retailer of the year. ThirtyFifty was up for the award of Educator of the Year against Laithwaite's Wine and Liberty Wines, the Italian specialist. The winner was... Liberty Wines.
A surprise was the High Street Chain of the Year, which went to Oddbins, beating the struggling Majestic. It goes to show, 10 years ago Oddbins was a basket case after several bankruptcies. However over the last few years under new management it has sorted itself out and is growing strongly.
Other notable winners included Joe Fattorini picking up Wine Personality of the Year - Joe is the lead presenter on the successful TV series The Wine Show. The Champion of Champions's Trophy was awarded to Piper-Heidsieck Rare 2002 and the award was collected by their champagne ambassador Simon Stockton.