Our inspiration for the Corky Winers came in May 2019 whilst we were on a wine road trip through Champagne and the Alsace. We had spent months planning a road route (over a bottle of wine or three) winding from Calais down to Mittelburgheim where we stayed on a working vineyard with the Wittman family.
Our route involved multiple stay-overs and stop-offs at pre-booked vineyards and chateaus but, of course, leaving time to drop in on those who we just happened across en-route.
As we travelled through France, we came across many smaller towns, clearly with the majority of residents making their living from the wine they produced. These were towns, villages and producers who we had never heard of. We stopped off, knocked on doors, spoke to locals, tasted their wine and filled up our car.
This, for us, was the best part of our trip – we had discovered wines that were little known in the UK but of exceptional quality and, best of all, we were supporting the local winegrowers who were so passionate about their wines. We arrived home with close to 200 bottles of wine we had picked up along the way.
We started to discuss how so many people in the UK were missing out on the gems we had just stumbled across and the seed for the Corky Winers was planted.
We returned to the reality of our day jobs but the Corky Winers remained in our minds and was discussed every time we opened another bottle we had collected during our road trip.
Then, like many, in March 2020 when Covid-19 peaked our lives changed. Amy had just launched her own legal consultancy business the week lockdown began and Sam, working in aviation, was immediately placed on furlough. At that point, Amy said: “let’s just do it, let’s start the wine business there is no better or worse time…” That afternoon we started considering potential names and checking if they were taken. After four or five the Corky Winers was mentioned and immediately we knew that was the one. It reflects our lively, bubbly and different approach to being winers.
We spent hours that evening discussing what we would stand for as a business and what we wanted to provide to our customers. We decided the best way to do business was give people all the things that we love: exceptional quality wines from small producers, local produce with paired wines and the nibbles we always enjoy with a glass of wine. All with the convenience of free local same day delivery which, we have found, is virtually impossible out in the sticks.
Since then its been full steam ahead…