Cornish wine shop named best in the South West
The team behind Truro-based wine merchant Old Chapel Cellars is celebrating this week, after being named Best Regional Wine Shop of the Year for the South West in the prestigious Decanter Retailer Awards.
Housed in an old Methodist Chapel on St Clement Street, Old Chapel sells to both the public and local hospitality businesses, championing an eclectic range of wine from around the world.
Decanter magazine is the oldest consumer wine publication in the UK, and a respected authority on wines and the wine trade; the annual retailer awards constitute Decanter’s guide to the finest wine shops, online retailers, and other wine services across the UK.
Despite difficult economic headwinds, the judges this year felt “a genuine sense of excitement, pride and awe at what these outstanding people are doing for wine in the UK,” and singled Old Chapel out for praise after it “impressed with its ‘unwavering’ focus on sustainability allied to an excellent range.”
Jamie Tonkin, who owns and manages Old Chapel Cellars alongside his business partner Louisa Fitzpatrick, said: “We’re ecstatic to have been recognised by Decanter and named best wine shop in the South West. We work hard to keep developing and growing our business despite the challenging trading conditions, so to receive recognition from such respected quarters is heartening.”
It has been an extremely busy few years for Old Chapel Cellars, which became the first UK wine merchant to achieve B Corp status back in 2022.
This latest recognition also comes hot on the heels of an International Wine Challenge (IWC) award for Best Regional Wine Merchant earlier this year.
The string of high-profile awards and accolades solidifies Old Chapel’s growing reputation as one of the UK’s top indie wine merchants.
Louisa Fitzpatrick commented: “The Decanter Retailer Awards, like the IWCs, are hugely well-respected in the wine business, and this latest accolade is an absolute credit to our wonderful team. We’re excited for the future and, needless to say, we plan to keep building on our success.”
With the busy Christmas period approaching, Louisa, Jamie, and the team don’t have long to celebrate before it’s back to business readying the shop for the festive season; they are also preparing to host a pop-up wine shop as part of The BIG Christmas Market on Lemon Quay, where they will be in residence 11th – 17th December.
Old Chapel also have an educational arm – the Cornwall Wine Centre – which offers a programme of wine courses to the general public and hospitality professionals, helping to spread knowledge and love of wine in Cornwall.
Photos: Old Chapel Cellars