Meet the Merchant - Great Western Wine

By Chris Losh

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Ex vat Chardonnay Wine

Great Western Wine The Wine Warehouse, Wells Road, Bath BA2 3AP Tel: 01225 322800 Fax: 01225 442139 Talking to Philip Addis, co-founder. Founded by...

Great Western Wine

The Wine Warehouse, Wells Road,

Bath BA2 3AP

Tel: 01225 322800

Fax: 01225 442139

Talking to Philip Addis, co-founder.

Founded by Philip Addis in 1983, following two years at Direct Wines and a couple of years at Hedley Wright, Great Western Wines has come a long way from the days when the wine was stored in a farm outbuilding. Most of their business is with the on-trade, delivering to restaurants in an area stretching from London to Swansea. They started out focusing on the south of France before moving on to Bordeaux, Burgundy, Italy and Spain, and have developed a

taste of late for the New World.

How many wines do you have in your portfolio?

More than 600.

What do you specialise in?

One of our strongest agencies is Australian and we're putting a lot of effort into Chile and Argentina.

Which are the vintages to look for?

If you've got a good winemaker you can make a really good wine in less good vintages, but it'll just be drunk at a different time. Having said that, 2004 from the Barossa looks stunning. We thought the 2003s were excellent. The 2004s are even better.

Which areas/sub-regions are most exciting for you at the moment?

South Africa is truly fascinating. There are loads of smallish producers coming on the scene every year.

Which producer do you rate most highly and why?

Martin Meinert, the ex Vergelegen winemaker, in Devon Valley, South Africa. He's a good communicator, intelligent, focused and makes great wines.

What is the key to a good wine list?

Match the wines to the food and the needs of the customer. If your average spend on food is £15 you don't want a wine list where all the wines are over £40.

Pick two wines for the Sunday roast

Lamb: Château Donjon Grande Tradition from Minervois, £4.70 (ex VAT). Grenache and Syrah with a lovely texture.

Beef: Devon Crest Cabernet/Merlot from Martin Meinert, £7.95 (ex vat). Big and rich. So well balanced you don't notice the high alcohol.

What about Thai green curry? Heartland Viognier/Pinot Gris £7.05. It has lovely peachy aromatics, but the Pinot Gris adds crispness so it's not overblown. One of our customers even serves chilled Pinotage from Martin Meinert £5.95 (ex VAT) with sushi.

Three unusual wines off your list that people should know about

Odyssée Oaked Chardonnay from Chateau Rives Blanques in Limoux. English owners - it's like Meursault, only affordable, £6.95 (ex vat).

Bodegas Bouza Tannat from Uruguay £7.95 (ex VAT). One of the top three vineyards in Uruguay - it's a big wine, really ripe and silky.

Carrick Pinot Noir from Central Otago. £15.10 (ex VAT).

Next trade tasting: February in London and Bristol. For more information on attending, email

Chris Losh's picks

CRUZ DE PIEDRA GARNACHA 2004, CALATAYUD, SPAIN Calatayud, 100km south of Rioja, has been making good, well-priced wines for a while and this is a prime example. Warm, spicy

strawberry fruit with a generous roundness to it, this is a steal at the price. £3.90 + VAT

OTTO BESTUÉ TEMPRANILLO/CABERNET 2003, SOMONTANO, SPAIN Another Spanish flier, but in a different style. Concentrated sweet, dark fruit is given added poise on the palate by the Cabernet's structure. This is silky, modern and, again, very good for the money. £5.50 + VAT

Related topics Training

Property of the week


£ 60,000 - Leasehold

Busy location on coastal main road Extensively renovated detached public house Five trade areas (100)  Sizeable refurbished 4-5 bedroom accommodation Newly created beer garden (125) Established and popular business...

Follow us

Pub Trade Guides

View more