In Brief

01 July, 2007

MacLachlans hits Scotland

Carling brewer Coors has launched a dark beer in Scotland in a bid to take on Scottish & Newcastle's John Smith's and Belhaven. MacLachlans aims to have a strong foothold in the Scottish market by the end of the year, but will not be released in England, a Coors spokeswoman told OLN. "MacLachlans is a really small brand for us in Scotland - it will be in about 100-200 pubs by the end of the year - but it does represent a very exciting opportunity in the only area of ales in growth," she said.

Retail crime forum

The Association of Convenience Stores is hosting a retail crime forum in Liverpool on June 13. The forum is designed to keep members up to date on crime prevention measures and allows them to share ideas. Key speakers include Harry Manku from the Chartered Security Group, Kam Kander from Alert Box and Colin Barton from Colindale Associates. The conference is free to all ACS members. To book a place or for more information call 01252 515001 or e-mail

Changes at KWV

Cape giant KWV is changing its Lifestyle range, introducing more fruit-driven wines, according to chief executive Thys Loubser. The range has also been repackaged with screwcap closures. Loubser, who was appointed in February, has restructured KWV into one company from the previous three companies with a "flatter structure and more direct reports", according to a spokesman. Loubser said: "In the past we have been far too production-based, we are now working towards becoming a public company." This will be achieved through focusing on the "consumers' voice", he added.

Small harvest Champagne

Krug has released its rare single vineyard Krug Clos du Mesnil 1996 in all major markets this month. Krug said the harvest was "one of the smallest recorded" from the vineyard, with 8,607 bottles and 602 magnums available worldwide. Each bottle is individually-numbered and presented in a wooden box. It will retail at around £500 a bottle.

Quarterly web mag

World Wine Agencies has launched the latest version of First Press , its quarterly web magazine. The site includes information on the launch of the La Chamiza Polo range of wines, a regular column from Olly Smith, elusive reader offers from WWA's UK polo partners Ascot Park Polo Club and Beaufort Polo Club and a Wine Relief 2007 update.

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Rosé tinted glasses

I was asked recently what I thought the biggest change had been in wine fashion in the past five years. My answer was unequivocal: sales of pink wines. From being a niche that expanded and contracted with the sunshine, rosé has subtly but steadily become a stalwart of many merchants’ ranges, with Provence firmly at the top and asked for by name.

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Is blended Scotch overshadowed by single malt in retailers?

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