The first ever London Wine Week had not one, not two, but THREE hubs. In association with Riedel glassware, we set up camp in what is now the ultimate foodie destination in Soho – Kingly Court, with a pop up bar, shop, and training school in one! We also set up camp on the top floor of Harvey Nichols, with wine sampling and special offers in store. And if that wasn’t enough – we took over Laithwiates in London Bridge, in association with Wines from Rioja. From there, our wristband-wearers could go on their self-guided wine tours, which for year one saw 150 venues offering either a £5 glass of excellent wine, or a tasting flight. All in all we had more than 7,000 attendees across festival activities, not bad for year one!
This year, we really streamlined – rather than having 3 satellite hubs we decided to bring all the fun into one place – and made our home at Devonshire Square near Liverpool Street. Nyetimber English Sparkling Wine created a wonderful wristband collection point, with a free glass of Nyetimber for every guest, and there were more pop ups from Wines of Portugal, WineTubeMap, Mirabeau Rose, and Franciacorta all based in the vicinity. We also decided that the best part of the Wine Tours were the tasting flights – why taste one wine when you can taste three? So we asked all participating venues to serve a £5 wine flight to wristband wearers, and the response was brilliant. The week was rounded off with an incredible “big bottles taste better” party at Sager and Wilde – magnums of wine and bbq food – what a way to end the festival!
Following a successful previous year, 2016 saw the return of the Nyetimber Hub in Devonshire Square, which once again ensured that guests kicked off their London Wine Week in sparkling style. We also introduced the London Wine Week Banquets, a series of wine tasting dinners in partnership with Disappearing Dining Club, all held at the LWW Hub.
Pop ups included a return of Wines of Portugal, plus a beach bar from Vins de Provence and our very own DrinkUp.London Vermouth Bar, where there was a full menu of delicious lower ABV vermouth aperitifs.
This year was the first year we welcomed a series of events from Loire Valley wines, including a rooftop BBQ at Queen of Hoxton and delicious tastings in some of the best wine merchants ion London
Once again, venues across town threw open their doors to offer wine flights to wristband holders, helping festival goers to discover new grapes, varieties and vintages from the comfort of London’s best bars and restaurants.
Our final year with Devonshire Square as our home saw the LWW hub bigger and better than ever, with an oasis of alfresco pop ups. Freixenet was top of the bill, with the launch of their brand new prosecco, served alongside their other delicious sparkling wines. Providing some Latin Amercian Spirit, Wines of Argentina brought their colourful pop up, and we saw the return of Wines of Portugal and Vins de Provence, keeping the holiday vibe alive with their Mediterranean wine flights.
We also launched The Wine Edit at Oval Space – our “festival within a festival”, transforming the warehouse space into a beautiful Mediterranean vineyard, giving guests the chance to experience the atmosphere and wines of different regions, or soak up the sun on the “Rogue Terrace” – a special vermouth terrace created by Regal Rogue vermouth.
To celebrate the move to digital Festival Passes - this year we moved to a new home, setting up camp in Flat Iron Square near London Bridge with an even bigger hub than ever before. The new location was packed with wine lovers every night of the week – clearly Monday is the new Friday!
Guests enjoyed the return of Friexenet, plus pop ups from Pol Roger, Loire Valley Wines, Graham’s Port, and Regal Rogue, as well as a special two day pop up from Berry Bros and Rudd nearby.
London Wine Week also coincided with the Royal Wedding – so we threw the ultimate street party – with a live screening plus plenty of cake – and of course, plenty of fizz. We think Prince Harry approved!
Once again the Wine Tours proved a huge success, with 125 venues across London serving £5 wine flights to Festival Pass holders.