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Why should wine drinkers in Spain buy imported wines?

The other day a friend asked me “Why should wine drinkers in Spain buy imported wines?”, it is a fair question. However, if on the other hand, I had been asked, “Should wine drinkers in Spain drink imported wines?”  I would say definitely, yes.  I often say to wine aficionados that in order to appreciate your own countries wines it is important to try other wines from further afield.

TheWinePlace.es started just eighteen months ago as a hobby when I imported a selection of  different wines from around the world for a group of friends.  Since then it has evolved into online store and wine club bringing in top quality wines from around the world for members to drink, enjoy (hopefully), develop their palates and learn.  The online wine business in Spain is growing and wine drinkers are becoming more adventurous and better informed.

So who should be buying and learning from imported wines?

1. Wine Aficionados – variety is the spice of life.  Many wine drinkers are knowledgable and enthusiastic TheWinePlace.es offers a way to broaden and add depth to that knowledge.

2. Winery Owners, Winemakers & Export Departments – Every winery that exports wines should regularly buy imported wines to taste, analyse and take note of what winemakers are doing in other countries.  These wines are the competition, be aware of what buyers and customers in other countries are being offered.  In other sectors you can be sure that competing products are checked and analysed in order to know what target customers are being offered.  This is not to say that, for example, Jealous Sisters Sauvignon Blanc from New Zealand is preferable than a Sauvignon Blanc from Rueda but a producer of Sauvignon Blanc in Spain should want to know the competition and when preparing to present his or wines to a buyer in the USA, for example, to know the styles, qualities and prices being offered and consequently highlight the strengths of Sauvignon Blanc from Rueda.  If a producer does not know what the competition is doing then they are only relying on getting lucky, not the best strategy.

3. Business Executives – Spanish executives who travel for meetings in other countries would benefit from some knowledge international wines. Here again, this is a service that TheWinePlace.es can provide, offering a broad range of wines from the key areas in the main wine producing countries in the world.  By regularly tasting top quality imported wines it is a great way to learn and benefit from the experience and as a result not be put off or intimidated by a wine.

Irrespective of the line of business if, for example, you are in Sydney Australia sitting down to a business lunch or dinner to be familiar with wines from McLaren Vale or the Adelaide Hills will make the Spanish executive feel more comfortable while at the same time be a good way to break the ice and start a conversation.

4.  Sommeliers – goes without saying that someone in this position should be finding out all they can about different wines.  Working in restaurants  or wine bars that cater to tourists, whether it be in a major city, rural town or on the coast,  would a German or British tourist will be accustomed to drinking in their own countries so that you can advise them on which Spanish wine from the list to choose.  For example,  Riesling from the Mosel, such as Fritz Willi, then maybe you would like to try a crisp Albariño or even a Xacolí.  If the customer is familiar with wines from the Cote du Rhone, mostly made from Garnacha and Syrah, then maybe offer the customer a wine from Calatayud, also made from Garnacha.

5. Foreign Residents Living in Spain – there is a demand for international wines to complement their regular diet of Spanish wines.  Another niche sector in the market.

At TheWinePlace.es we still have a way to go to reach more wine consumers here in Spain.  As an online store we are constantly working on the model trying to find best way to position the webpage to attract new customers.  If you would like to receive more information and news sign up to receive our newsletter.

Written by

I am a Northern Irishman based in Valencia. My career in wine began more than three decades ago, in London. I am the founder of TheWinePlace.es, an online store, where wine enthusiasts can enjoy a selection of international wines and Verde Marte, a company dedicated to exporting Spanish wines. Also, Thewineplace.courses, an "approved program provider" of the courses of the prestigious WSET. I share my passion for wines through my media work writing weekly columns for the Spanish newspaper El Mundo and 5 Barricas, an online wine magazine.

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