Former Somerfield wine chief Angela Mount is turning her multi-million pound palate to coffee.

Mount – who made headlines around the world three years ago when Somerfield insured her taste buds for £10m (US$20million), saying at the time that they were ‘vital to her job’ – will advise Fairtrade and organic coffee company Percol.

She has also set up a wine advice website with ex-Western Wines MD Mike Paul, and also consults for the food and wine division of home tastings company Taste-In.

She will advise Percol on how to raise its consumer profile by addressing the parallels between coffee and wine.

‘Until recently, people have tended to have a fairly simplistic view of coffee and this was mainly geared around strength,’ said Mount. ‘The wine industry has played a massive part in increasing people’s experience of taste. Coffee is as diverse as wine. As with wine, soil, topography and climate produce different styles and flavours.’

Percol founder Brian Chapman, who also worked in the wine industry, has developed tasting notes for several Percol coffees that draw on the similarities between coffee and wine in terms of terroir and single origin status.

‘Coffee farms are as intriguing and individual as vineyards,’ he said ‘I’ve always held a firm belief that coffee was more than just another beverage you kept in the cupboard.’

Written by Maggie Rosen