Our Stories: Melanie Brown

Written by Zoe Stapleton.

Mel Brown finalJust one of the many impressive feats that us Kiwis can be proud of is the exceptional quality and range of our wines, so we were thrilled when The New Zealand Cellar launched in 2014 and opened up the New Zealand wine market to the UK.

The driving force behind The New Zealand Cellar is Melanie Brown. Starting out as a chef at Peter Gordon’s restaurant The Providores, Melanie’s focus swiftly moved from food to wine after she took note of the diverse range of wine on offer at the restaurant. With her passion taking over, Melanie eventually moved into a front of house role that allowed her to manage and coordinate all wine-related activities.

Over time Melanie became increasingly aware of the overseas demand for premium New Zealand wine and realised that there was no online platform for consumers to purchase it from and enjoy at home. This planted the seed for her business The New Zealand Cellar, and from there she set on a mission to share New Zealand wine with the lovely folk of the UK. The business started as an online platform in 2014, later expanding with a store at Pop Brixton in 2015.

Starting her own business away from home hasn’t been easy, however Melanie says the support from networks, friends and the New Zealand community has been enormous. Overall, Melanie is so proud of how well New Zealand wine has performed on a global scale and she is hugely passionate about continuing to spread and evolve the perceptions of New Zealand wine.

It makes Melanie incredibly proud to see the wealth of New Zealand businesses that do succeed in London, and she enjoys helping new businesses flourish in any way she can. Going forward, Melanie has exciting plans for The Cellar to increase its reach both online and by opening some new stores. So watch this space, and in the meantime, head down to The New Zealand Cellar for a taste of home! 

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