Melanie Brown Is Champion of Our Wine in London
If you are looking to have your eyes opened to the wonders of New Zealand wine, then Melanie Brown is the one to call. Since joining The Providores and Tapa Room in Marylebone, headed up by fellow New Zealander Peter Gordon, as a pastry chef in 2005, Brown has carved a unique path in wine, first as sommelier at the restaurant, and later branching out into independent retail, all the while retaining a firm footing in London’s on-trade.
“After trying to be a hard-ass chef for many years, I developed an unhealthy obsession with the intricacies of New Zealand wine, the breadth of the industry and the people behind the wines,” Brown says.
“So naturally, my world engineered its way to creating a platform that honoured the New Zealand wine industry.”
Having worked her way up to the role of wine buyer at The Providores, Brown spread her wings in 2014 to found specialist retailer The New Zealand Cellar. A wine bar and shop at Pop Brixton followed in 2015, which is today home to one of the most comprehensive selections of premium New Zealand wine in the world, and also offers private tastings and unrivalled winemaker events.
A bottle of Ata Rangi Craighall Chardonnay cemented her love of wine.
“It was just a life changing moment, that moment I knew I’d have to be in the wine industry, forever,” she says.
Original article by Lauren Eads, The Drinks Business, September 28, 2018.