67 Pall Mall to launch UK’s biggest wine list
London private members’ club for wine lovers, 67 Pall Mall, is adding 2000 new wines to its range in a bid to launch the largest list in the UK this December.
While the current list, which runs to around 3,000 wines, is already one of the UK’s biggest, the extended range will mean that the wine club has as many as 5,000 wines available by the bottle on site for members and their guests.
“We are taking the wine list up to 5,000 lines,” Grant Ashton, founder and CEO of 67 Pall Mall, told the drinks business on Friday last week, noting that a major focus among the additional bottles would be biodynamic, organic and natural wines.
Adding that the new selection would be available at the club from early December this year, he said that the “massively increased list” should ensure that 67 Pall Mall is home to the largest selection of wines in the UK.
Although Ashton was wary of claiming that the 5,000-strong wine list was definitely the UK’s biggest, other British restaurants that are notable for their extensive wine selection don’t appear to run close to 67 Pall Mall in terms of size.
Indeed, Ashton mentioned both The Vineyard at Stockcross and The Greenhouse as two places with massive wine lists, but these two British restaurants – the drinks business can confirm – have 2,500 and 3,600 lines respectively.
However, if there is one aspect to the soon-to-be launched new list at the private members’ club that Ashton was sure about, it was 67 Pall Mall’s supremacy when it comes to wines by the glass.
While the club currently offers as many as 500 different wines by the glass – a record in the UK already – the relaunched wine selection will see that increase to 800, which he said was more than double 67 Pall Mall’s nearest rivals.
He also said that the club was able, in effect, to provide every wine on the list by the glass, should a member request it.
With everything served using the Coravin wine access system, he commented, “We have Cheval Blanc ’61 available by the glass, but if you want to have the ’59, you can.”
Prompting Ashton to update and extend 67 Pall Mall’s wine list is both a significant expansion for the venue in terms of space, facilities and number of members, as well as increased competition in London from new wine-focused clubs since 67 Pall Mall was launched.
Ashton told db that 67 Pall Mall was “roughly doubling in terms of seats” with the addition of a new floor, comprising a bar and seating area, as well as an extra and larger private dining room, and a spirits bar.
As for the heightened level of competition in the capital, London is soon to gain a new restaurant and wine club called Oswald’s, created by Robin Birley, son of Mark Birley, the founder of famous Berkeley Square nightclub Annabel’s, as well as a three-story wine-focused fine dining restaurant at 85 Piccadilly, created by Yevgeny Chichvarkin, the founder of Hedonism Wines in Mayfair.
London is also soon to see the opening of the Ten Trinity Square Private Club, housed within the Four Seasons Ten Trinity Square hotel, which opened in January.
This wine-focused club is the result of a collaboration between the Four Seasons, Château Latour and chairman of the Reignwood Group, Chanchai Ruayrungruang – a Bordeaux-collector with a particular fondness for Latour.
For Ashton, the emergence of several wine-focused private members’ clubs in the two years since 67 Pall Mall opened its doors is an incentive for his team to further improve his club’s drinks offer, and proof that 67 Pall Mall is a successful concept.
“At the end of the day it validates the model,” he said, commenting on the emerging competition.
67 Pall Mall has already earned top spot in Wine List Confidential, which ranks London’s leading restaurants according to the quality of their wine list.
The reviewers, while acknowledging that this is a private members’ club, rated 67 Pall Mall as the best place in the capital to drink wine due to the venue’s vast and varied selection of wines, sensible pricing, Zalto stemware, and team of first-class somms.
As reported by db last year, 67 Pall Mall is expanding into a new floor to allow up to 1,000 more people to join the club, and last week, Ashton said that the place had already attracted 800 new members.