Ashika Mathews holds a degree in viticulture and oenology and was a winemaker in Rioja and Bordeaux. Her experiences include organizing the International Wine Challenge, working for Jancis Robinson and a fine wine buyer. She started London Love Wine, a wine school and events company. Her talk at the International Wine Tourism Conference is titled “Tourism in the English Sparkling Wine Industry.” The presentation will look at creating strong consumer loyalty, successful marketing campaigns, and high achiever industry personal.
As one of the speakers at the upcoming IWINETC in Reims, France I had a chance to interview Ashika about her experiences and presentation.
How does that viticulture and oenology degree help you in your present company London Love Wine?
It gives me a much greater appreciation for the work involved in producing the wine and allows me to communicate that much more effectively and passionately to my students and guests.
What are some statistics of the wine industry of England?
Wine sales are set to top £100million this year.
Sparkling wine makes up 66% of our total wine production.
English wine is exported to 13 countries.
Total acreage of vines has increased to 4500 up from 1879 in 2004.
There are 470 vineyards open for business.
Grape varieties for sparkling wine include the traditional Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Pinot Meunier trilogy. We also do well with German hybrids such as Seyval Blanc, Reichensteiner, Muller-Thurgau and Bacchus and Dornfelder for red wine.
What is the most important marketing step a winery or wine region should take?
Big question!! Communication I suppose. Each one will have its own strengths and challenges and identifying them and responding to them is important. Making sure people know you are there, and traveling to meet people at fairs and inviting people to visit and taste your wines is key for longevity.
What are you aims ad objectives by participating at IWINETC?
Well I am hoping to get a deeper understanding of what different vineyard areas offer and how to best organise a tour for my clients to maximise what they take from it and how it impacts on the community as a whole.
I am also very excited to visit the region of Champagne in more depth than I have before.
IWINETC is the place to refresh your industry knowledge! Our carefully chosen talks and impressive line-up of industry experts will be sharing their experience with conference attendees through cutting edge talks. See the Conference talk programme by clicking on the front cover of the Conference Catalogue:
Article: Terry Sullivan, CWAS WineTrailTraveler.com