Bath wine merchant scoops coveted Decanter Award for second year running

By Anita Jaynes on 18 September, 2020

Novel Wines, a Bath-based local wine merchant founded in 2016 by former wine journalist Ben Franks and wine importer Gyorgy Zsiga, has won ‘Best Specialist Retailer – Central & Eastern Europe’ at the Decanter Retailer Awards 2020.

The Decanter Awards celebrate the best retailers up and down the UK. Novel Wines were shortlisted alongside The Wine Society, Best of Hungary and Taste of Georgia. They were crowned winners on 7th September by a team of expert industry judges.

It’s the second year running Novel Wines has won the award, winning it previously in 2019 when they beat runners-up Croatian Fine Wines. Over half of the independent wine merchant’s list of over 200 wines are sourced from central and eastern Europe. The remaining list features an exciting selection of English, South American, Mediterranean and Asian wines.

Ben Franks, wine buyer and co-founder of Novel Wines, said, “we’re absolutely over the moon to have won this award for a second year. Our team has worked really hard and it’s good news like this, especially this year, that gives us something to be really proud of!

“At Novel Wines we focus on doing something different by sourcing wines from lesser known regions that taste great. We only buy the best wines and our team gives a personal service to help customers explore something new.

“A massive thank you to our customers, especially those in Bath who have visited our new bricks and mortar shop we opened on Upper Bristol Road in November last year. Thank you for supporting us!”

The judges for this year’s Decanter Awards were Peter Richards MW, Andy Howard MW, Laura Clay, Kate Hawkings and Peter Ranscombe.

Pictured above: (Left to Right) Deniz Bayram, Ben Franks and Elena Whitehead of Novel Wines with the award