Newcastle wine merchant, Michael Jobling runs his respected wine business with an excellent website for on-line ordering. No bricks and mortar shop to browse through – although there are several tastings each year in the heart of Newcastle.
We are a small family business run by Michael Jobling and his niece, Torie Jackson. Based in the North East but with a national distribution, we began in 1988 with a modest 45 wines and a hopeful list of friends and acquaintances. Michael had previously worked as a management accountant in the motor trade but – either because of or despite this – developed an all-absorbing interest in wines. Throwing caution to the wind, he gave up the day job to concentrate on what he realised he liked best; discovering wines of interest, value and originality. We have now grown our wine stock to a carefully chosen but eclectic list of around 300.Torie joined the growing business in 1996, having previously worked for the National Trust. She has worked her way through all ‘sectors’ of the company – sales, deliveries, office administration, accounts, sourcing and buying – developing her wine palate under Michael’s tutelage along the way. Today, although the division of work is fairly fluid, Torie is more often to be found in the office and dealing with customers (a role she combines with bringing up three children and a farmer husband) while Michael is more often out on the road, in charge of wine ordering, deliveries, restaurant customers, and talks and tastings. Wine selection is a team effort.We specialise in finding interesting wines from smaller growers as well as sourcing good value wines from the larger producers.
A combination of youth and experience seems to work well, with many reliable fine wines on the list interspersed with some interesting and keenly-priced wines from smaller producers and less-familiar regions. The whole approach seems very unstuffy, and I particularly liked the “why use us section” – a good mantra for good independent wine merchants everywhere!:
We like to keep things simple
We don’t sell wines that we would not drink ourselves.
We don’t stock wines that you would find in big multiples or supermarkets. Ours are often from small producers – interesting, different, good value, unexpected.
We don’t expect you to be a wine expert (that’s our job) but we don’t mind if you are.
We don’t sell you a more expensive wine if a cheaper one fits your brief.
We don’t expect you to invite us in for a glass of wine, but we don’t mind if you do (only joking!).
Michael Jobling Wines Limited, PO Box 90, Ponteland, Newcastle upon Tyne NE20 0WZ t: 01913 784 554