Sainsbury's joint venture with Oddbins, Destination Wine, has stopped trading online.

While the company’s other two channels – in-store and direct mail – will continue as before, the online channel has been shut down as a result of the break-up of Sainsbury’s joint venture with Carlton.

Destination Wine was set up 18 months ago as a partnership between supermarket chain Sainsburys and Oddbins, the highly-rated chain of UK wine shops. Wine was sold in store, by direct mail (telephone ordering) and through a website, tasteforwine.co.uk. This site was closely linked to Taste – the website set up when Sainsbury’s forged a partnership with UK TV and digital channel Carlton.

So when the Sainsbury’s-Carlton deal collapsed last year, the web base was pulled out from underneath tasteforwine.co.uk.

‘The Taste website went down at the end of January,’ Destination Wine MD Shaun Harvey told decanter.com. ‘Therefore our site went down as well.’

The company is working on a new site which will be up ‘sometime this year’, Harvey said. He added, ‘We always saw online as the smallest channel out of the three. The other two channels are doing what we want them to do.’

Sainsbury’s intends to keep the coveted taste.co.uk Internet address – but a spokesman said it would be ‘open to offers’.

Written by Adam Lechmere14 February 2002