Olly samples the best of the UK’s indie wine sellers—

The Bunch unites seven top UK independent wine merchants who gather annually to share their best bottles. I buy from all of them and recommend browsing the websites of Adnams, Corney & Barrow, Haynes Hanson & Clark, Lea & Sandeman, Private Cellar, Tanners and Yapp Brothers for some serious treats.

Searching under a tenner? Adnams Douro Red 2017 (14.5%) is a spicy Portuguese beauty that over-delivers for £9.99. Tanners Merlot Pays D’Oc 2018 (13%) is a juicy red from £8.20 and for a white, Private Cellar’s Les Rafelières Sauvignon Blanc 2018 (12%) is £9.95 and tastes like a mini-Sancerre. I ordered six mixed bottles each from Lea & Sandeman and Haynes Hanson & Clark. Surprise wine of the day? A US blend from Lea & Sandeman: Stem Theory 2015 (14.5%), £24.50 – so good I just had to buy it.


PICPOUL PARTY: Picpoul de Pinet 2018 (12.5%) £7.49 Adnams. A citric missile of a white, the perfect aperitif.

MORE THE MERIEAU: Le Bois Jacou Gamay Merieau 2018 (12.5%) £13.25 Haynes, Hanson & Clark. I ordered this fragrant, vibrant, lighter French red on the spot.

BALANCED BORDEAUX: Château Tayet Cuvée Prestige 2015 (13.5%) £14.80 Private Cellar. Brilliantly balanced Bordeaux, order a case for Christmas.

READER, I BOUGHT ONE: One Block Yellingbo Syrah 2017 (13.5%) £30.95 Lea & Sandeman. Intriguing as a black olive wreathed in secret spice. I bought it!


Breaky Bottom Cuvée Oliver Minkley 2011 (12%) £36.95 Corney & Barrow. Soaring zesty fizz to rival the world’s best – proudly grown in Sussex.

This column was originally published in EVENT Magazine, Mail on Sunday, 13th October 2019