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  • Jancis Robinson
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  • Jancis Robinson
8 Dec 2009

Despite the dire news announced in this thread in our members' forum at the end of October, Wine Rack stores in the UK are not dead and gone. The Venus group, run by James Rackham (son of Arthur) et al, has bought the name and the 14 stores listed below* from the administrator and is running free tastings in them all from noon on Saturday, with 40% off a very particular selection of wines.

These are all reasonable quality wines imported by Hatch Mansfield, which allows the new team to claim that this 'exciting selection of high-quality wines has been chosen by managers of the 14 Wine Rack Stores … after the inaugural meeting of the new Wine Rack management team, from an extensive selection presented by Patrick McGrath MW' (head of Hatch Mansfield and ex chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine).

The wines to be tasted and which will also be offered at well below the regular price on Saturday are:

Taittinger NV Brut Champagne £39.99 reduced to £23.99
Louis Jadot 2008 Mâcon Blanc £10.99 reduced to £6.59
Vidal East Coast Sauvignon Blanc 2008 (New Zealand) £8.49 reduced to £5.09
Villa Maria Private Bin Gewürztraminer 2008
(New Zealand) £9.99 reduced to £5.99
Villa Maria Private Bin Rosé 2008 (New Zealand) £8.99 reduced to £5.39
Louis Jadot Beaujolais Rouge £10.99 reduced to £6.59
Errazuriz Merlot 2008 (Chile) £8.99 reduced to £5.39
Villa Maria Cellar Selection Syrah Gimblett Gravels (New Zealand) £14.99 reduced to £8.99

I'd say the last wine is probably the best buy, even though no vintage is specified.

The offer applies in all 14 Wine Rack stores listed below and is only available on Saturday 12 Dec, subject to availability. Maximum single purchase of Taittinger Champagne at the special price is limited to six bottles.

*London: 58 Salusbury Road, Queens Park NW6 6NP Tel: 0207 624 7639; 8-9 Bedford Corner, The Avenue, Turnham Green W4 1LD Tel: 0208 994 3211; 4 Lupus Street, Pimlico SW1V 3DY Tel: 0207 834 7401; Highbury Park N5 2AB Tel: 0207 226 2285; 237 Elgin Avenue, Maida Vale W9 1NJ Tel: 0207 624 1990; Southfields 1 Replingham Road SW18 5LT Tel: 0208 874 6705; Berkshire: Ascot: 55 High Street SL5 7HP Tel: 01344 872 549; Reading: 303 Lodden Bridge Road, Woodley RG5 4BE Tel: 0118 969 5084; Essex: Epping: 192 High Street CM16 4AQ Tel: 01992 572 105; Hertfordshire: Harpenden: 52 High Street AL5 2SP Tel: 01582 765 148; Kent: Bromley: 147-151 Westmoreland Road BR2 0TZ Tel: 0208 313 0496; Oxfordshire: Henley-on-Thames: 19-21 Market Place RG9 2AA Tel: 01491 410 023; Surrey: Farnham: 68 Ridgeway Road GU9 8NS Tel: 01252 715 321; Guildford: 216 London Road, Burpham GU4 7JS Tel: 01483 575 933.