Wholesaler Inverarity Morton is set to launch a new specialist wine division to work with its high-end restaurant, bar and hotel customers.
The new fine wine division will be headed by a sales manager, who will have the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) Level 2 or 3 Award and be a WSET-accredited trainer; the team will also include three wine development managers.
Inverarity Morton is currently recruiting for the new roles and aims to have the team in place and the new division up and running by the end of this month.
The new team will focus on Inverarity Morton’s ‘prestige accounts’ for which wine is a major focus.
The fine wine division’s range will feature top-end wines drawn from Inverarity Morton’s 2000-strong list and will include “iconic wines and special vintages”.
The range will be backed by comprehensive training in top-end wines for outlets’ staff along with a raft of other support.
Donald Campbell, sales director at Inverarity Morton, which acquired Forth Wines in October 2013, told SLTN the launch of the fine wine division is a “natural step” for the supplier.
“We’re a wine company through and through and everyone at Inverarity is a wine salesperson,” said Campbell.
“This new division we’re setting up will concentrate on the top echelons of wine.
“We had a lot of top-end wines and inherited more through Forth so we have the range these top-end accounts need. The fine wine division’s range will be drawn from our 2000 wines and will bring in some iconic wines, special vintages.
“We want to ensure we as a business give our customers what they need.
“It’s exciting and a big investment for us.”
Across the Inverarity Morton business as a whole, Campbell said there has been increased demand for low and no-alcohol products in the wake of the lower drink drive limit.
“We’ve got alcohol-free wines and we’ve also increased our range of alcohol-free beers and premium soft drinks,” he said. “We’re always reassessing our range and our customers’ needs.”
Campbell said he also expects sales of rosé wine to spike again this summer.
“Rosé sales are huge now compared to a couple of years ago,” he added.
“We recommend stocking more than one to offer alternatives to the usually relatively sweet rosés.
“In white, we’re seeing a wee increase in Chenin Blanc with people trying something different.
“Picpoul and Albarino are growing but they’re not taking over from Pinot Grigio yet, it’s a phenomenon.”