db’s guide to this year’s London Wine Fair

TASTINGS

Copyright: Anthony Upton 2016©

One key benefit of this is that it allows space for the team to introduce a third tasting area, meeting soaring demand, building on the long-running masterclasses and the pop-up tastings that were introduced last year.

“The Walk-in Tasting is a bit different as you can’t reserve it as you can the pop-up tastings. It is like what we had before the technology allowed us to put booking system in place. But we’re conscious that not everyone gets to book those places as they go very quickly, so we thought it’d be good to have a first-come, first-served basis on the day,” Carter explains.

Around eight to 10 tastings are planned for the Walk-in Tasting over the three days, with a further 13 masterclasses as well as the pop-ups. Topics covered include the Nebbiolos from Alto Piemonte, how techtonics have shaped the wines of California, the indigenous varieties of Armenia, the grapes of Savoie and Australian and green Spain.

“It’s an absurd number of seats at tastings this year, once you add it all up,” Carter notes. “But tastings have always been a big part of the LWF and are more important than ever. We’d like to think we’ve led the way for international tastings, as every show is now doing them, but there is undoubtedly strong demand, and education is a strong part of what the wine world wants for itself.”

“So there are about 2,500-3,000 seats available at tastings over the three days, which is quite something when you think about it. That’s about 35% more seats than last year. Plus, of course, there are the industry briefings.”

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