Wine Society launches new own label range

The Wine Society has launched a new series of limited-edition private-label wines championing exceptional ‘under the radar’ grapes.

The Bin Series, which is available now, will flag up wines the buyers think are ‘worthy’ of the accolade of the new series and harks back to the Wine Society’s heritage of discovering new wines.

Each ‘Bin’ will be available for a limited time, on a ‘when it’s gone it’s gone’ basis. Depending on the parcel size, it will stock “100s of dozens of bottles rather than 1000s of dozens,” it told db. Although it would not bring a bin back in future, it said that if a particular wine proved very popular, the Society would consider adding a future vintage to the range under its grower’s label.

Head of Buying Pierre Mansour told db that throughout its history, the Wine Society had quietly innovated with its cutting edge wine range, citing it being the first merchant in the 1960s to ship Musar from Lebanon, pioneering en rama Sherry in the UK and being instrumental in persuading Gonzalez Byass to release their first Tio Pepe en rama exactly 10 years ago.

“With the Bin Series our aim is to be bolder and prouder about unusual grapes or off-the-beaten-track regions, that pass our quality-first approach to wine buying,” he said.

The first wine in the series, Bin #001 comprises a 2017 Bobal from producer Altolandon in Spain’s DO Manchuela, which Mansour described as “an under-the-radar gem that bowled me over”.

The Society described it as “intensely rich red with generous blueberry and spice flavours, made from Spain’s native bobal grape” and noted the approach to winemaking by producer Rosalia Molina and her husband reflected a growing and exciting trend in Spain that puts the vineyard and quality of grapes at the heart of everything they do.

“Old vineyards (up to 140 years) and high altitude (1100m) results in grapes that have near perfect balance between flavour ripeness and freshness. They then take a light touch in the winery- no fining, no chemicals, tiny amounts of sulphur- so their wines are unadulterated expressions of the natural characteristics of the vines,” it said.

A second wine in the series is already in planning for the summer.

Earlier this month The Wine Society reported turnover in excess of one hundred million pounds for the first time, after seeing a 3% increase in sales despite against a tough backdrop for booze retail in the UK.

he Society said it believed its business model – as a not-for-profit organisation that is owned by and sells to its membership – “frees it from many constraints that companies are bound by, allowing it to operate in a different way to its competitors”.

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