Platter meltdown continues


The bombshell that Christian Eedes, of eponymous Wine Report fame, no longer visualizes for the Platter wine label guide opens yet more fresh water between Tops at Spar, the nation’s liquor largest retailer and the Diners Club/Standard Bank owned publication.

photo 10 615x461 Platter meltdown continues

Spar long ago refused to enter their buyer’s own brand wines for sighted evaluation by Platter and the comments by editor Phil van Zyl that a supermarket wine could never earn five stars, confirmed their resolve. For Spar have several potential five star wines in their armoury: the Mirabilis MCC, the Quintet and Le Geminus blends plus the Optimus sur lie Sauvignon Blanc, for example. Liquid proof for Phil that never is a very long time indeed.

Not that Spar is afraid of competition – these wines won an incredible 10 medals at Veritas last year, including double gold. No, just that expecting a supermarket wine to get good ratings is a big ask given the cartoon characters running Platter. Veritas, of course, tastes blind and prejudice against Supermarkets obviously does not apply.

Quite why Mark Norrish still enters the Secret Cellar wines of Ultra Liquors is a mystery, as his wines have also proved their quality, time and again in local blind tastings, winning RECM best value commendations for Sauvignon Blanc and Red Blends as recently as Wednesday plus the trophy for best MCC at the Old Mutual Trophy Wine Show last month. A cynic might say stand by for Platter five star glory as pressure is brought to bear on tasters by Platter management desperate to keep Ultra on board.

IMG 3547 615x819 Platter meltdown continues

As one of six Tops at Spar Fundis, Christian was obviously in an untenable position wearing a Platter fluffy cap and a snazzy Spar apron. But the turmoil in the spittoon this morning revolves around the vexed question “did he jump or was he pushed?”

Whatever the answer, this is yet another PR disaster for Standard Bank. Surely shareholders will soon start asking “why does a bank own a wine guide?” Let’s hope Diner Club director and wine brand owner Reg Lascaris has some convincing arguments in the spacious boot of his Ferrari.