Laithwaites is a big name in wine, but still qualifies as an independent wine merchant. Tony Laithwaite was the first to realise the dream of hiring a van and tootling off to France to buy some great, but little known wines for the UK consumer, initially through the Sunday Times Wine Club. Whilst the “man and van” approach is very dated now, the approach to finding and buying wines remains much the same.
In the 1970’s we were the first merchants – of any nationality – to prospect and buy wine from the wine regions of southern France … Bergerac, Duras, Cahors, Madiran, Gaillac, Minervois, Saint-Chinian and so on eastwards. Then came other countries; Rioja, Bulgarian Cabernet, even wines from Australia that were first shipped in 1974.Bordeaux Direct was unique for only selling wines bottled by the producers; because they simply had more flavour, extra character, total authenticity and somehow anyone, even a newcomer to wine, coruld always taste that quality and goodness.
Excellent website which is easy to navigate good tasting notes – online ordering – retail shops (in-store tastings) and special offers for new customers.
Laithwaites Wine New Aquitaine House, Exeter Way, Theale, Reading, Berkshire, RG7 4PL t:0845 194 7711
Laithwaites at Vinopolis – 219-221 Stoney Street London SE1 9AA
Laithwaites Beaconsfield – 17-21 Gregories Road Beaconsfield HP9 1HH
Laithwaites Bracknell – John Nike Way Binfield RG12 8TN
Laithwaites Croydon – 417 Brighton Road South Croydon CR2 6EU
Laithwaites Gloucester -7100 Hurricane Road Gloucester Business Park . Gloucester GL3 4AQ
Laithwaites Hersham – 63-65 Molesey Road Hersham, Surrey KT12 4RS
Laithwaites Huintingdon Banks End, Wyton, Huntingdon, Cambridgeshire PE28 2AA
Laithewaites Orpington – 348 Crofton Road Locksbottom, Orpington Kent BR6 8NN
Laithwaites Reading – New Aquitaine House Exeter Way, Theale RG7 4PL
Laithwaites Solihull – 60-62 Station Road Solihull, West Midlands B91 3RX
Laithwaites Surbiton 78-80 Portsmouth Road Surbiton, Surrey KT6 5PT
Laithwaites Virginia Water – Unit 1, London Road Virginia Water, Surrey GU25 4QE
Laithwaites Windsor 121 Arthur Road, Windsor, Berkshire SL4 1RU