Former model launches London’s first wine car boot fair

Former fashion model Ruth Spivey is to launch London’s first wine car boot fair in a bid to shine a light on the capital’s independent wine merchants.

Netil Market in London Fields

Netil Market in London Fields

Wine Car Boot will take place this Sunday at Netil Market in London Fields in East London’s Hackney district.

Seven independent wine merchants will be pouring their wines at the fair, including Hackney’s Bottle Apostle and Borough Wines, Holborn-based Planet of the Grapes and Roberson from Kensington.

The merchants will be selling wine from their car boots, with each offering a number of wines for sampling – a £15 ticket buys you 10 tasting samples.

Spivey hopes the fair will encourage Londoners to try new wines in a relaxed and unintimidating setting while at the same time supporting independent merchants.

Ruth Spivey. Credit: Nevs

Ruth Spivey. Credit: Nevs model agency

“I wanted to create a tasting that was totally different to anything else out there, something fun and accessible for the public, where wine is mixed with street food and music rather than separated off and turned into something stuffy,” Spivey told the drinks business.

“My mission is to get people out of the supermarket by giving them access to quirky and interesting wines they might not usually try. I want people to learn about wine but in an enjoyable environment,

“One of the merchants will be selling their wine out of a vintage Bentley and another a retro caravan, so it definitely won’t be your average wine tasting,” she added.

The 32-year-old, who lives in London Fields, spent 10 years as a model, walking for the likes of Chanel and John Galliano and starring in a Diet Coke advert.

Having become bored with the job, she moved into the world of catering, working as front of house for Michelin-starred restaurant Arbutus in Soho where she trained as a junior chef.

While still doing to odd modelling job, Spivey is much happier working in wine. “I made the most of my modelling career and enjoyed a lot of it but I get a lot more pleasure from wine and food; it’s my life,” she told db.

If successful with Wine Car Boot, Spivey, who is due to complete her WSET Diploma this year, plans to roll out her concept to car parks across the capital.

She already has her sites set on a venue in Peckham for a South London version of the event, and has been approached by a number of merchants keen to take part in the next fair.

In addition to the fair, Spivey hosts private wine tasting events and runs a pop-up wine bar called Street Vin, which is currently parked at Street Feast in Dalston on Fridays and Saturdays.

Wine Car Boot takes place from 12pm-6pm this Sunday at Netil Market. In addition to 10 samples, a £15 ticket gets you a Govino tasting glass and a 6-bottle wine carrier.

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