In brief

31 October, 2008

The UK's first French Wine Growers Fair will be held on Nov 21-23 at London's Barbican Exhibition Centre. Over 130 wine growers from all the French wine-producing regions will present more than 500 wines at the event, which is open to the general public. Advance tickets cost £10 . For more information visit frenchwinegrowersfair.com.

Argentina's Finca Las Moras has launched its first consumer campaign. The Perfect Harmony promotion will give out recipe cards for traditional Argentinian dishes to consumers buying the wine. The brand is also sponsoring the Argentinian section of Antony Worrall Thomson's At Home magazine, and is planning a consumer sampling campaign early next year.

HBJ Wines & Spirits has been appointed UK agent for Beelgara Estate in Australia. Graham Cox, sales and marketing director at HBJ, said: "Beelgara gives HBJ a real opportunity to be competitive and deliver big volumes in all channels across a number of price points in the Australian category. "

Paragon Vintners has teamed up with 10 International to handle UK distribution of new wine La Poderosa

- which mean s "the powerful one " . Unveiled at the recent Argentin ian generic tasting, the label shows the front end of a 1939 Norton 500 motorcycle .

Free Run Wines and its partner, Spanish wine producer F élix Sol ís SA, have a new Rioja crianza appearing on shelves in Threshers for Christmas. El Circulo Crianza (rrp £12.99), comes from one of F élix Sol ís's newest additions and the largest winery in Rioja, Pagos el Rey. It is made from 50% Tempranillo and 50% Garnacha grapes, and is aged for 12 months in new American oak barrels.

Australian wine brand Rosemount has launched the Rosemount Taste Awards, which aim to celebrate the "best in fresh and stylish contemporary ideas" in the world of design and cuisine. The winners will be voted by the public and announced at an awards ceremony in January 2009.

Fantinel Wine Group has released what it says is the first wine to raise money to combat famine in the Third World. Celebrate Life Merlot is a

Grave del Friuli DOC, from which

part of the proceeds will go towards studies into spirulina algae, a natural food supplement researchers believe

can save lives in undernourished populations. Fantinel also reported

that its exports to the UK grew

45% last year.




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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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