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Decanter Retailer Awards: The 2022 winners

Announced across two days, full results of the Decanter Retailer Awards 2022 have been unveiled. Discover the nation's best wine retailers with all category winners named below.

An indispensable guide to the best wine shops, online retail, wine specialists and wine support services in the UK, Decanter Retailer Awards 2022 results are out now, with an exceptional list of winners to discover and support across the nation.

Challenges are simply part of the landscape for retailers these days, but there are those who are rising to these challenges in style.

The UK wine retail scene has undergone huge changes in the last five years, and our evolving categories aim to reflect this: online is ever-more important, virtual events are here to stay, sustainability is a vital issue.

This year’s judging has thrown up intriguing and exciting winners, all of whom are well worth your time and attention. They do us wine lovers proud.

Scroll down to see the 2022 winners

See the Decanter Retailer Awards 2022 Shortlist

Decanter Retailer Awards: The 2022 winners

Outstanding Retailer of the Year

Winner: Jeroboams
The big win went to a retailer which, in the judges’ words, has ‘really upped its game in the last few years’. Both in-store and online, Jeroboams offers a delightful and ever-improving wine experience, as well as personable service and an excellent range.

Judges’ Choice

Winner: London Sake
Runner-up: Sip Champagnes
London Sake does an outstanding job across education, online operations and retail, inspiring people to experiment and navigate what they term ‘the often mysterious world of sake’. Sip Champagnes is a dynamic new presence on the UK wine scene and well worth looking into.

Supermarket of the Year

Winner: Booths
Runner-up: Waitrose & Partners
It’s been a strong year for Booths, both in terms of sales and profitability but also progress, having opened a wine bar in Lytham, Lancashire, and introduced new fine wine concepts in Ilkley, Ripon and Windermere. The (growing) list is excellent, and the focus on sustainability and the local communities is laudable. Waitrose remains an excellent supermarket for wine.

National Wine Retailer of the Year

Winner: Majestic Wine
Continuing its laudable renaissance, Majestic’s range is once again a joy to peruse, from classics to new-wave bottles. The retailer is supporting diversity initiatives and charity, running tastings, helping recycle corks, and it recently launched a new Wine Club focusing on themed cases four times a year for subscribing members.

Small Online Retailer of the Year

Winner: Independent Wine
Runner-up: The Sourcing Table
Independent is a true e-commerce specialist whose sales are growing strongly off the back of a well-sourced range and diligent online work. The Sourcing Table also impressed in this category, with excellent online content.

Midsize Online Retailer of the Year

Winner: Wanderlust Wine
Runner-up: Honest Grapes
Wanderlust goes from strength to strength, growing emphatically with a firmly online-focused model, having increased turnover tenfold since pre-2020 (it triumphed in the Small Online Retailer category in both the 2021 and 2020 Retailer Awards). Honest Grapes has also grown impressively and is worth discovering.

Large Online Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Wine Society
Runner-up: Naked Wines UK
These days, online is hot competition. The Wine Society won for a third year in succession, for its outstanding range, commitment to education and user-friendly format. Naked Wines earned plaudits for its ‘seamless’ online experience.

Newcomer of the Year

Winner: The Sourcing Table
Runner-up: Sip Champagnes
Last year’s runner-up The Sourcing Table was born out of the pandemic in 2020, an offshoot of importers Indigo Wine. Its innovative model, dynamic online presence and ‘great’ list sealed the win for a venture ‘going places’. Sip Champagnes brilliantly exploits its niche and is another one to watch.

Green Champion Award

Winner: Naked Wines UK
Runner-up: The Vinorium
Naked was praised by the judges for its efforts on both the micro (LED lighting in its Norwich HQ, recycling waste) and the macro scale (bulk shipping, recycled boxes, lightweighting six million bottles in 2022 and saving more than 450 tonnes of glass). The Vinorium was certified carbon neutral for the second year running.

Hybrid Wine Retailer of the Year

Winner: Humble Grape
Runner-up: Vinoteca
This new category highlights retailers that sell wine both on-premise and off-premise. ‘This is what they do – a true hybrid – and they do it so well,’ said one judge of Humble Grape, which earned praise for its excellent, eclectic list and commitment to growth. Vinoteca is well established, but remains a trailblazer in this field.

Virtual Wine Experience of the Year

Winner: The Wine Society
Runner-up: Honest Grapes
Virtual events are here to stay, as evidenced by this hard-fought category. The Wine Society took this award for the second year running, for its sheer range, number and success of virtual events across many platforms, with 12,000 members generating 52,000 registrations (and more subsequent views). Honest Grapes’ events were also deemed ‘impressive’.

Regional Categories

Best Regional Wine Shop – Central England

Winner: Mr & Mrs Fine Wine – The Wine Bank
Runner-up: Hattersley Wines
With its 700-strong list, Enomatic dispensers for sampling, and regular tastings, The Wine Bank in Southwell, East Midlands, is certainly worth a visit. Bakewell, Derbyshire-based Hattersley has pivoted well from on- to off-trade via a ‘honk for plonk’ drive-through, to a shop and website with an impressive range.

Best Regional Wine Shop – North East England

Winner: House of Townend
Runner-up: Carruthers & Kent
House of Townend near Hull impressed with its wide range (1,836 wines), new Enomatic dispenser systems and commitment to developing the retail side of the business; ‘Progressing and progressive,’ said one judge. Of the ebullient Carruthers & Kent in Gosforth, one judge said: ‘Love their vibe’.

Best Regional Wine Shop – North West England

Winner: The Whalley Wine Shop
A serial winner in these awards, The Whalley Wine Shop goes from strength to strength. The team continues to grow, as do sales. The 1,218-strong list, plus a new website and wine bar, makes this Ribble Valley hotspot a highly recommended wine destination for all wine lovers.

Best Regional Wine Shop – South West England

Winner: EW Wines
Runner-up: Grape and Grain Wine Merchants
EW Wines has done a good job of shifting from on-trade sales, with a new site off the A30 in Cornwall featuring Enomatic machines and a fine range. Grape & Grain is a personable, well-stocked shop in Crediton, Devon, complete with shop dog and ‘naughty room’ for fine Barolos, Burgundies and other fine wines.

Best Regional Wine Shop – Northern Ireland

Winner: James Nicholson Wine
A celebrated name beyond Northern Ireland that’s definitely a long way from resting on its laurels. James Nicholson Wine in County Down has grown its 1,995-strong list (95% sourced direct) and has refreshed its website. The ethos of ‘continual improvement’ is noticeable.

Best Regional Wine Shop – Scotland

Winner: St Andrews Wine Company
St Andrews punches above its weight in terms of online communication and tastings. ‘We’ve focused on the fun aspect of wine,’ the merchant says, attracting a younger crowd to its ‘Tardis-like’ shop to sample an eclectic, intriguing range.

Best Regional Wine Shop – Wales

Winner: Noble Grape
‘Particularly impressive and comprehensive in the £10-£20 range, which can be tough to achieve,’ was one judge’s observation of Noble Grape, run by the experienced Richard Ballantyne MW, who offers a personal and engaging service.

Best Regional Wine Shop – London

Winner: Philglas & Swiggot (Battersea)
Runner-up: Highbury Vintners
Philglas & Swiggot is a retailer revitalised and, south of the river, its Battersea operation in particular has evolved and improved. Last year’s winner in this category, Highbury Vintners, remains an outstanding wine shop in north London, with an extensive range, excellent events and an accent on sustainability.

Best Regional Multi-Store – Central England

Winner: Cambridge Wine Merchants
Runner-up: Tanners Wine Merchants
The category with the highest aggregate marks was a close-run thing, but Cambridge won for its ‘dynamic’ performance, including record turnover, personal service and excellent events. Shropshire-based Tanners Wines continues its impressive trajectory, having bolstered the team with younger talent and focused on sustainability.

Best Regional Multi-Store – South East England

Winner: The Vineking
Surrey-based The Vineking’s motto is: ‘Explore great wine without the nonsense’. The range, shops and team do a fine job delivering on this aim, with 700-plus wines and an engaging agenda of events.

Best Regional Multi-Store – Scotland

Winner: Woodwinters Wines and Whiskies
Repeating its category-topping performance of last year, WoodWinters is improving and enhancing its shops in Bridge of Allan and Inverness, where the ranges are both extensive and appealing (fed by the 2,100-strong list within the wider business). Events and tastings are another strength.

Best Regional Multi-Store – London

Winner: Jeroboams
Runner-up: The Good Wine Shop
‘Fantastic list, great price range, personable service, excellent in-store promotions.’ So said one judge of Jeroboams, which won through in a competitive field that saw The Good Wine Shop also commended for its ‘pleasant shopping experience’ and fine range.

Specialist Categories

Australia Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Vinorium
Securing this category for an incredible fifth year in a row, north Kent-based The Vinorium ‘lives and breathes’ Australian wine. It is a true specialist, offering more than 370 wines, with a range that’s as exciting as it is diverse. Customer engagement is excellent, sustainability is prioritised, and the company recently invested £100,000 into its new e-commerce platform.

Austria Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Wine Society
Members of The Wine Society ‘have a thirst’ for Austrian wines, as witnessed by sales exceeding £2m for the second year in a row, including more than £400,000 for en primeur, a rare venture for a UK retailer. ‘Great producers, outstanding own-labels,’ said one judge, as The Wine Society took the award for the third year in succession.

Bordeaux Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Goedhuis & Co Fine Wine Merchant
Runner-up: Bordeaux Index
‘Bordeaux isn’t just one thing, and Goedhuis covers it all brilliantly,’ was how one judge summed up. £10m sales, 1,800 wines, 42 vintages, 21 appellations – and excellent communication and engagement to back it up, including The Wine Dinner (featuring all five first growth estates) raising £300,000 for charity. Bordeaux Index also offers a huge range and is notably proactive en primeur.

Burgundy Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Goedhuis & Co Fine Wine Merchants
Runner-up: House of Townend
Goedhuis describes its team as ‘Burgundy fanatics’ – and it shows, for a second consecutive year. Be it in the careful sourcing of new domaines, relentless engagement with customers, or simply pure passion for the product, Goedhuis goes above and beyond. House of Townend offers an excellent Burgundy range featuring many mature vintages.

Central & Eastern Europe Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Novel Wines
Runner-up: Best of Hungary
‘Brilliant to buy from’, ‘Supports the local community’, ‘Very successful’, were the judges’ comments on Novel Wines, the dynamic Bath merchant with an outstanding and growing range, which secured it the top position once again this year. Best of Hungary ‘does a great job drawing people into a category that’s more diverse than you think’.

Champagne & Sparkling Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Sip Champagnes
Runner-up: Cambridge Wine Merchants
A very tight call between two outstanding operators. Newcomer Sip Champagnes has a laser-like focus on cutting-edge wines from the region and, in the words of one judge, ‘is changing the game for Champagne’. Cambridge, meanwhile, offers an outstanding and diverse range of Champagne and sparkling wine.

England & Wales Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Grape Britannia
Runner-up: The English Vine
Cambridge-based Grape Britannia is an excellent evangelist for the English & Welsh wine cause, stocking 228 wines across a range of prices. Triumphing again this year, it has refreshed and updated its range, bolstered its online presence and resumed events (even featuring ‘wine and crisp matching’). The English Vine also does a laudable job.

Germany Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The WineBarn
Runner-up: Justerini & Brooks
The WineBarn is a bona fide German specialist whose small scale fails to impede its vociferous championing of the cause, reflected in its promotion from runner-up in the 2021 Retailer Awards. Enthusiasm, knowledge and experience are what you get with The WineBarn – that, and a fabulous range of 283 German wines across a range of prices. Justerini earned praise for its ‘great list’.

Italy Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Jeroboams
Runner-up: Bat and Bottle Wine Merchants
A highly competitive field saw Jeroboams emerge victorious this year, by dint of its excellent (and ever-improving) Italian range, passionate communication and engaging events including a Festa Piemontese tasting. Bat and Bottle offers an outstanding Italian list and highly personal service.

New Zealand Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Jeroboams
The judges were impressed by Jeroboams’ commitment to ‘doing something different’ with its New Zealand list, looking beyond the Marlborough Sauvignon trope to less-established pét-nat and Hawke’s Bay Cabernet Franc wines. Producers include the likes of Craggy Range, Hunter’s, Kelly Washington and Kumeu River.

Organic & Biodynamic Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Good Wine Shop
A genuine commitment to stocking small family producers who make organic or biodynamic wine shines through from southwest London-based The Good Wine Shop, which also does a good job of flagging these wines up in store. The ‘Quirky Sommelier’ mixed case also works well.

Portugal Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Wine Society
Runner-up: Majestic Wine
‘Exciting’ was the word one judge used about The Wine Society’s Portuguese range – which secured it this category for a second consecutive year – citing indigenous varieties and fine own-label wines. No wonder then that its Portuguese wine sales have topped £4.2m. Majestic’s Portuguese range is also fast improving.

Rhône Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Carringtons
Manchester-based Carringtons took the Rhône category again – it is an excellent destination if Rhône wines are your thing, having worked hard to develop the regional range over three decades.

South & Regional France Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: The Wine Society
‘Terrific trio of buyers, terrific range,’ commented one judge of The Wine Society, repeating its last two years’ triumph in this category. It is a real forte: 247 wines comprising 17% of the range (but about half in the £8-£15 sweet spot), majoring on value, diversity and deliciousness. Madiran en primeur, anyone?

South Africa Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Museum Wines
Runner-up: Majestic Wine
Dorset-based Museum Wines continues to develop and improve its already impressive South African list and specialism, which safely secured it this category in the 2021 and 2020 Retailer Awards. This year the merchant has added three new farms and a fun new blind online tasting format. Majestic is developing an excellent list with great value and diversity.

South America Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Taste Argentina
Argentina has taken huge strides lately, something that’s not always reflected on the high street but certainly is at online specialist Taste Argentina, which wins this category for a third time in a row this year. Turnover is up, customer retention is high, events are impressive and the 214-strong list goes from strength to strength.

Spain Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Highbury Vintners
Runner-up: Ultracomida
Another fiercely fought category. Last year’s runner-up, Highbury has improved an already impressive list, leading one judge to comment on a ‘lovely range across the piece from Vega Sicilia to Lanzarote’. Aberystwyth-based Ultracomida also earned praise for an excellent range and brave pivot from tapas bar.

Sweet & Fortified Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Vintage Wine & Port Limited
Runner-up: Cambridge Wine Merchants
Two outstanding specialists here, in a reversal of last year’s category positions. Vintage won for its epic 1,500-strong list, with the sweet wine range in particular having been bolstered this year (from 18 to 145 wines), as well as its efforts to win over a younger audience through YouTube and social media. Cambridge has a joyous range in this category.

USA Specialist Retailer of the Year

Winner: Roberson Wine
Runner-up: Wanderlust Wine
Roberson has ‘bust out dancing’ from the pandemic, its USA range outstanding in California but also beyond, and its achingly cool events featuring Californian tacos, live graffiti and ‘the sweet beat of retro vinyl’. Wanderlust continues to grow and impress with its USA range.

Wine Support Services

En Primeur Campaign of the Year

Winner: Goedhuis & Co Fine Wine Merchants (Burgundy Campaign)
Runner-up: Goedhuis & Co Fine Wine Merchants (Bordeaux Campaign)
A double win for Goedhuis, impressively for a third year in succession. The merchant earned praise for overcoming Covid-related obstacles not only to deliver impressive numbers and excellent ranges but also to engage with its customers admirably. Good service and effective communication is the key to successful en primeur: Goedhuis nailed it.

Subscription Wine Club of the Year

Winner: The Little Fine Wine Company
Runner-up: Bat and Bottle Wine Merchants
A category that continues to grow and become ever-more competitive, yet producing a repeat of the result in the 2021 Retailer Awards. Little Fine Wine champions its niche with aplomb, featuring an excellent range of half-bottles and a highly personal service. Bat and Bottle’s subscription offers an engaging adventure into Italian wine.

The 2022 judging panel

  • Peter Richards MW is a regular contributor to Decanter, the DWWA Regional Chair for Chile, and Chair of our Retailer Awards since 2013
  • Michelle Cherutti-Kowal MW is a wine writer, consultant, educator and WSET lecturer, and was a DWWA 2022 Acting Regional Chair for Tuscany
  • Laura Clay is a member of the Association of Wine Educators, an accredited Bordeaux and Rioja tutor, and was UK Champagne Ambassador in 2010
  • Leona De Pasquale is a wine educator, writer and translator, and founder of London-based tea and wine training and events company Camellia & Vine
  • Simon Field MW was a buyer for merchant Berry Bros & Rudd and now works as a consultant. He is the DWWA Regional Chair for Champagne and the UK
  • Vidya Narasimhan is an independent wine consultant and writer with previous international experience in banking and management consulting

In support of the UK drinks community, for a third year all proceeds from the 2022 awards will be donated to UK drinks industry charities, including The Drinks Trust and The Ben.

Decanter Retailer Awards: The 2021 winners

Decanter Retailer Awards homepage

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