13 June, 2008



The Butlers Wine Cellars


Your shop is burning down. What

do you grab as you leg it out the door?

Cash, charity box and my tandem bike.

It's our round - what are you having?

A couple of Negronis, a magnum of Vega Sicilia Unico 1970 and a magnum of Château d'Yquem 1970, which is my birth year. I'll share it

with whoever is at the bar.

If you could choose anyone

to be prime minister, who would it be?

Stephen Gerrard - he leads by example.

What's more important, what you know or who you know?

Who you know probably, but in the best sense . I enjoy people

- if you know a load of stuff but don't have anyone to share it with it might be pointless.

How do you deal with irritating customers?

Not very well, then complain about them to friends.

Does money motivate you

Of course

- it motivates me to spend it quite quickly . I'm not very good at pursuing it though.

Tell us something about yourself that would surp rise your friends?

I'm only 38.

If you could be reincarnated, would you still work in the drinks industry

I'd return as '68 comeback special Elvis with an interest in wine and a wallet that allowed me to do it as a hobby.

What's the most unusual thing you've ever done in your job

Myself and a friend, Andy Martin, rode a

20-year-old tandem

through France to Bra in Italy for



the Chestnut Tree House Hospice. The twist was that we took in a support vehicle cases of English wine

to conduct


for the French and Italians. We went through Champagne, over the Vosges mountains to Alsace, back to Burgundy and Rhône then through the

Alps to Piedmont, where Cantine Ascheri and the Slow Food movement arranged an eight-course dinner for 50 people where we presented English wines . A big adventure, we weren't aiming to sell the wine, we were more ambassadorial . So far we have raised about £15,00 for the charity, but the trip warrants more.

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Is blended Scotch overshadowed by single malt in retailers?

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