SKIPTON'S Wright Wine Company is a finalist at next week's prestigious Drinks Retailing Awards in London - billed as one of the biggest nights in the UK drinks industry calendar.

It will be up against the best in the independent wine retailer of the year category at the awards due to be held on Tuesday (February 6) at London's Dorchester Hotel. 

Established in the town in 1982, The Wright Wine Company is a specialist supplier of wines and spirits, ranging from the everyday to the premium and for both retail and the trade.

Its extensive product list offers 'seven rooms of drinks heaven'– featuring more than 3,000 wines from around the world and has rooms dedicated to both Bordeaux and Burgundy.

And its not just all about wine, the business stocks more than 1,200 whiskies and substantial collections of brandy, including Armagnac, Cognac and Calvados, as well as fortified wine, gin, liqueurs and rum.

The company’s interests will be represented at The Dorchester Hotel on by Stella Mallinson and Les Hall who say they will be 'donning their glad rags and dancing shoes'.

"We are a very well established independent merchant," said Stella.

"We trade from a beautiful 18th century former smithy in the handsome market town of Skipton on the edge of the Yorkshire Dales; a recipe for being a bit stuffy ; elitist maybe? Absolutely not ! We are, we think, approachable and friendly."

Les could not agree more. He said: "Snobbery still sadly exists in the wine trade, but certainly not with us.

"You want to come in and splurge on a few high end Burgundies or some on trend Georgian amber wine - That's fine. You want to break away from supermarket standards and treat yourself - but you have always felt a bit intimidated by the independent wine shop - also fine. Absolutely perfect in fact.

"We’ve loads of products and a fair bit of knowledge, yes, but we feel our strength is in our enthusiasm for what we do, the actual range of our offer and our down to earth and general customer orientated approach."

They both added it was an honour to be nominated and to be in such esteemed company on the night.

Other awards to be presented on the night are supermarket of the year, beer retailer of the year, and spirits retailer of the year.

For the winners, the awards bring industry prestige, enhanced profile, marketing muscle and increased sales potential.