Local Wine Experts

Mark Holland

Midlands & East Anglia

Tell us about yourself?

When I’m not working, I’m a busy father of four as well as a reasonably decent runner competing from Parkrun up to Ultra Marathon distances. Helps keep me fit & active!

How long have you worked in the industry?

I joined Carlsberg in 2003 and have worked in Take Home Sales, National On Trade, Free Trade before moving in to my current role with Wines & Spirits. It has been an exciting and fascinating journey and I have picked up plenty of wide ranging knowledge of this great industry.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Talking to customers & colleagues, I love learning about their business and finding ways to support and develop our businesses together. Plus I’m selling Wines & Spirits, what’s not to like!

What’s your favourite wine?

Il Passo Verde Nero d’Avola. A deep, aromatic & intense Italian Red. It’s one of our new range, and believe me, it’s pretty special.

Will Davis

LONDON & SOUTH COAST

Tell us about yourself?

If I’m not indulging in drinks I play and watch sports, immerse myself in music, lose myself in movies and travel the globe!

How long have you worked in the industry?

I started my study of the wines and spirits world with the WSET in late 2012, and almost immediately I was fortunate enough to experience my first job in the industry in Dubai, where I was responsible for managing key wines and spirits accounts in the UAE while also organising wine trainings and promotions in India. I have worked in UK retail and regularly assisted at wine events since, and most recently have explored the wonderful world of sake!

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Every challenge is rewarding, but I particularly enjoy inspiring both existing and prospective customers by enthusing about our portfolio of terrific brands at events and through training. It’s also a tremendous privilege to work with happy, proactive people in a dynamic team!

What’s your favourite wine?

How long is a piece of string? My family’s association with the industry meant I was lucky enough to drink a lot of Champagne from an early age and I try as many as I can to this day. I have a fast-growing fascination with Albariño, not to mention the complexity of any wine produced from a blend of grapes grown on different soils. I also have a sweet tooth so I’m a huge fan of dessert wines, port and Pedro Ximénez sherry!

Ian Chilton

Granada, North Wales & West Midlands

Tell us about yourself?

My passion for wine is about getting people to taste and experience new wines and the enjoyment they give. In my spare time on sunny days I play bad golf, but its fresh air and exercise! Nothing is better than socialising with family and good friends over a  great meal with a glass or two of wine.

 How long have you worked in industry?

3 years running restaurants and bars and now in my 20th year with Carlsberg UK.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Working with customers to increase their sales and profit through staff training and by developing and improving their wine and drinks list.

What’s your favourite wine?

With Sunday Roast beef then its Domaine Mas Belles Eaux, Petit Verdot. A great French red  which is deep in colour, youthful dark fruits on the nose, juicy palate which is mid to full bodied.

Victoria Davis

Northern England

Tell us about yourself?

I’m a Leeds lass who loves nothing better than taking Vini my Weimaraner dog for walks, when I’m not supporting Leeds United or going to gigs!  I love exploring new place and trying different wines from home or abroad.

How long have you worked in industry?

Almost 28 years!  I fell in love with wines from Burgundy & Loir Valley in France, then for personal reasons completed WSET Level 1 & followed up with Level 2 and am now qualified to teach Level 1 and am studying for Level 3!

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Helping support the development of customer businesses, by providing guidance around their wine offering

What’s your favourite wine?

Whites – Meursault from Burgundy & Reds – Cote Rotie from the Rhone

Ross Lees

North East, Cumbria & Scotland

Tell us about yourself?

I’ve a real passion for the wine industry and learning new things about it. Outside of work I enjoy running, golf and being run ragged by my two kids!

How long have you worked in industry?

I’ve been in the drinks industry for over ten years starting as a General Pub Manager for Belhaven. I then moved to the other side of the bar and worked my way up to IFT Account Manager for Molson Coors – it was here that my interest in Wines began.  After gaining my WSET qualifications at Bidvest Foodservice, the opportunity to join Crown Cellars came along & it was a dream come true and I haven’t looked back!

What’s your favourite part of your job?

I enjoy every aspect of my role – particularly spending time with customers and prospective customers which can be in various formats from presenting proposals to hosting Wine evenings, training to consulting on what wines to carry based on relevant data.  The role is so changeable that no 2 days are the same and I love what I do!

What’s your favourite wine?

I love big full-bodied reds…..at the moment it’s Negroamoro!

Vanessa Roberts

South West & South Wales

Tell us about yourself?

When I don’t have a glass in my hand, I’m usual planning my next global trip, navigating a muddy field or falling over in it!  I enjoy running in my spare time and my main hobbies are traveling, cooking and fitness.

How long have you worked in industry?

I’ve worked at Carlsberg UK for 14 years, with 12 years’ experience selling Carlsberg /Crown Cellars wines.  Before that I worked for 7 years, for one of the UK’s leading cider brands. I’ve worked in the Off Trade and On Trade side of the business, both in Wholesale, National Accounts and Free Trade.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

I enjoy travelling around meeting different customers and working alongside the different sales managers. Every day is different and I enjoy all the different varieties each day brings from tastings, to teaching WSET and creating wine lists.

What’s your favourite wine?

Taittinger Nocturne

Michael Puckett

Leeds & London

Tell us about yourself?

In my free time, I tend to be either binge watching a box set with an glass of Diplomatico in hand, or struggling through a bit of ill-conceived DIY, in my home in Leeds!

How long have you worked in industry?

I have 20 years of industry experience, as an operator and trainer.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

I enjoy training up teams, working with customer on wine/beer/spirits & food pairing recommendations and planning and running events.

What is your favourite wine?

Hard to say – it depends on mood, day, time of year and a hundred other things, I think. I do love a good cold, crisp Albarino, but I can’t seem to get enough of Manzanilla sherry right now. Actually, sherry in general! My nan would be thrilled, I’m sure!

Jacob Ratcliffe

Yorkshire & Nottinghamshire

Tell us about yourself?

When not indulging my passion for all things drink-related, I can be found travelling the country, watching my beloved Nottingham Forest most weekends, or in some far-flung part of the world, watching England play cricket; a glutton for punishment some might say!

How long have you worked in industry?

I’ve worked within the wine industry for over 10 years ago, starting my career working for a wine merchant in New Zealand, when I moved to the UK 7 years ago I joined the Crown Cellars team & have not looked back!

What’s your favourite part of your job?

The most enjoyable part of the job, is working with customers to develop their wine offering and introducing them to new wines and spirits from smaller, lesser known producers.

What’s your favourite wine?

I developed my love of Pinot Noir, when I worked in New Zealand, which continues to this day!

Dougal Kenny

London & South East

Tell us about yourself?

I’m a seasoned traveller and am lucky enough to have visited many of the world’s leading wine-producing countries but my main hobby is songwriting and recording my own tunes.

How long worked in industry?

I’ve worked for the Crown Cellars team since 2008 and have 17 years’ experience in the wine trade.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Working with people that are just as passionate as I am about the greatest product on Earth!

What’s your favourite wine?

Mmm, tricky one! Taittinger Comtes de Champagne if you’re offering, but you also can’t beat a good quality Southern Italian red, like the Vitti Negroamaro from our Crown Cellars range.

James Price

Customer Marketing Manager

Tell us about yourself?
I’m new to the wine industry, so trying to learn fast. Outside of work I’m a self-confessed movie buff, if you need a good film recommendation. I’m also a keen baker, although my success rate isn’t quite at the standard of ‘The Great British Bake Off’ yet.

How long have you worked in industry?
Whilst I have worked for Carlsberg UK for 20 years, this has always been within the beer side of our business. I am a relative newcomer to the wine industry having only started my current role a year ago.

What’s your favourite part of your job?
Currently, the most interesting part of my role is learning about the wine category. I also enjoy finding new ways to talk to our customers and the trade about our great wine range at Crown Cellars. I have a passion for using digital to ensure information about our wines reaches as many people as possible, so make sure you’re following us on Facebook and Twitter.

What’s your favourite wine?
I am a big fan of Shiraz, so my current favourite is ‘It Came From Vinus’ from our exclusive Vinivison range.

Jess Tyson

Customer Marketing Executive

Tell us about yourself?

Outside of work, my kids and music are my main passions. Now my daughters are a bit older I get the joy of combining them both, by teaching them to play music and taking them to festivals.

How long have you worked in industry?

I’ve worked for Carlsberg for 14 years since returning from a 12 month trip around the world.

What’s your favourite part of your job?

Learning about all the different grape and wine varieties and the effect that the harvest can have on the grape crops around the world.

What’s your favourite wine?

I love most wines, from a good heavy Rioja to a crisp Sauvignon blanc, but I have a particular soft spot for a nice chilled bottle of Moet.