Independent supermarket in Dorset beats Tesco and Asda to be named “best Beer & Cider Retailer in the UK”
Dike & Son of Stalbridge was named Beer and Cider Retailer of the Year, as well as picking up two other awards at a prestigious national award ceremony in London – Independent Retailer of the Year and Independent Drinks Retailer of the Year.
In awarding the trophy for Independent Drinks Retailer, the judges described it as an “approachable family store that knows its customers and goes out of its way to provide for them when it comes to sourcing a product or offering advice – matching a wine to a meal, perhaps.”
It was also chosen by the judges to receive a national award for Beer and Cider Retailer of the Year over other contenders in the category (Asda, Sainsbury’s and Tesco) in recognition of its innovative and effective approach to managing this vitally important sub-category. The store stocks over 150 different ales and ciders (many of them from Dorset and Somerset) and holds regular tastings.
The grocery and baking business was first started in Stalbridge in 1851 by Henry Dike. Now it is one of the country’s biggest independent stores, employing 90 staff, and which has grown and developed under the stewardship of fifth generation family member Andrew Dike and his general manager Adam Vincent.
Managing Director Andrew Dike said: “We are chuffed to bits. It’s all a bit overwhelming, but a proud moment indeed for Dike & Son. We would like to thank the fantastic team we have at the store, our brilliant and loyal suppliers and of course, our valued customers.”
Dike & Son then went on to scoop a third national award, overall
Independent Retailer of the Year, “thanks to a raft of innovations that have included increasing involvement in online ordering and social media”.
Its local ranges, which include meat, milk, fresh produce and ready meals, as well as wines, beers, ciders and spirits, were deemed by the judges to be exceptional.
Earlier this year the store, which supports more than 120 local growers, makers and bakers, was named South West Champion for Local Food in the Countryside Alliance Awards (the rural “Oscars”).
Retail Industry judges said: “There have been a lot of genuine innovations in the last 12 months. Their energy and creativity are truly impressive.”
Dike & Son was also felt to demonstrate excellence when it came to community involvement. “They live and breathe local and that is a huge stand-out. It’s a real community hub,” said one judge. “Even though they’re a big supermarket, they’re still embedded in their community.”