Would you buy wine 'sight unseen'?

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When you buy wine from your local independent wine merchants, you probably put a reasonable amount of thought into your decision.

Perhaps you have a favourite region or grape, or even a favourite brand you trust to buy wine from time and time again.

But there are changes afoot, and they're beginning in the restaurant industry, as Wine Intelligence's Lulie Halstead noted in a recent article.

In a piece entitled 'Chicken, or chicken' she looked at the trend for pop-up restaurants, such as one in South London that serves only rotisserie chicken, and nothing else except for four side dishes and two sauces.

The drinks are similarly simple, although it is possible to buy a specific brand of beer; but significantly, that is not the case with the wine.

When you buy wine at The Chicken Shop, you can only select its colour - red, white or rose - and its 'quality', listed on the menu as 'house', 'decent' and 'good'.

There is also the option of prosecco, but that's it - and the wine comes in unlabelled carafes, so you have no way of knowing the brand, grape or region.

"Wine can be made simple, but should be uplifting and thought-provoking at the same time," argues Ms Halstead.

"A focus on origin, authenticity and craftsmanship seems like a good starting place - but not telling me what wine I'm drinking feels a bit extreme."

Would you be happy to buy wine in this way? It's akin to wearing a blindfold on your next visit to your local independent wine merchants - or are you too chicken?

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