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Emporia Brands rolls out spirits school

Published:  24 January, 2011

Emporia Brands is rolling out a series of spirits training days for specialist wines and spirits merchants.

The courses are aimed boosting the levels of product knowledge in multiple specialists and independent retailers.

The company has recruited Mark Ridgwell to lead the training and has further created a Wine Rack Spirits School, with the first one day course starting on February 24.

Every manager and senior assistant at the 20-store Wine Rack chain will attend and sit the examination to gain the WSET Foundation Certificate in Spirits.

Emporia says this is a significant step in Wine Rack's mission to become one of the UK's leading spirits retailers, and is the first time a high street retailer has had this level of investment in service skills for the spirits category.

Rhythm & Booze, the 80-store Yorkshire-based specialist, will also offer its team the chance to learn.

"The language of fine spirits" course provides a full day's programme analysing the position of premium spirits in the current market.

Emporia Brands chairman, James Rackham, said: "The specialist sector has changed massively in the last 18 months, following the crash of First Quench which at one time had over 3000 outlets.

"But from all these changes has emerged a vibrant group of passionate independent retailers, whose enthusiastic staff are hungry for knowledge they can pass on to their customers."

Mark Ridgwell founder of spirits educators, Taste & Flavour and provider of the WSET spirit qualifications will be lead many of the training days for the "Language of Fine Spirits" courses.