The fact that Waitrose, itself a vineyard owner, is a noted retailer of English wine has helped it garner the European Wine and Spirit Retailer of the Year 2011 award at the IWSC awards.
This is the latest accolade in a successful run for the supermarket, which has also won the Decanter Supermarket of the Year, the IWC Supermarket of the Year and two Drinks Retailing awards this year.
Pierpaolo Petrassi MW, Head of Wines, Beers, Spirits and Tobacco Buying says: “Our focus on English wine, glass light-weighting and extending our spirit range have all helped us to achieve this fantastic range of awards. We look forward to leading from the front with plans for wine, beer and spirit innovation from our excellent team in the next year.”
The supermarket will also be sponsoring an award from 2012, for Outstanding Achievement in Wine. The award will be in the name of the late Julian Brind MW, who led the Waitrose Wine Buying team from 1971 until his retirement. Julian was instrumental in evolving the Waitrose wine department and his incredible knowledge of wine combined with superb retail acumen made him a charismatic figure respected throughout the industry. He died in December 2010 and is greatly missed as an inspirational man, a dedicated colleague and a friend.