Hay Wines celebrates Milan win


Hay Wines is celebrating winning a prestigious award in a competition that it did not actually enter.

Last month the independent merchant in Ledbury, Herefordshire, won Best Italian Wine Selection at Milano Wine Week.

“This came as a complete surprise to us as we had only just arrived in Italy on a tasting tour,” says the company’s Andy Garbi. “So we were naturally over the moon when this award was presented to us out of the blue.

“We’re not aware of any application procedure as we didn’t apply to be considered. We have no clue who nominated us but nominations probably occur based on how businesses are, in effect, ambassadors for Italian culture.

“What we do know is that we were approached to submit a list of Italian wines that we sell in-store and online. The final selection for an award is through a jury panel. The award winners are worldwide, but we’re the only specialist retailer in the UK to receive one this year.”

Italian wines are a strong suit for Hay Wines. One of the wines that the judging panel took into consideration was 1231, an organic Pinot Noir sparkler made exclusively for the company by the Padroggi family in Oltrepo Pavese, northern Italy.

This wine is named in honour of the foundation in 1231 of St Katherine’s Hospital, one of Ledbury’s oldest buildings, by Bishop Hugh Foliot.

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