- Robert Rolls
"I was 26 when I sold my first case of wine off Smithfield Market in March 1979."
Shipping wine for over 40 years
Established in 1979 Robert Rolls Ltd has been shipping wine to the UK for 40 years.
We specialise in small production, handmade wines of the highest quality.
All the wines on this list are sourced directly from their producers, and many are exclusive to RR&Co.
Our list offers a depth of choice within Burgundy as well as a fine selection of small growers producing terroir driven wines across France.
It was 40 years ago in March that I started my wine business off Smithfield Market. In many respects the timing could not have been worse as the country had just been through the Winter of Discontent. However, aged 26, with all the abandon and optimism of youth, I took the plunge.
My premises consisted of a small area on the ground floor, and 3000 sq feet of cellars (formerly meat cold storage units) beneath, part of a fine Victorian building opposite the front of Bart’s Hospital. Links between the Wine Trade and the Medical Profession are notoriously strong and within a few days of opening the head of Oncology heard a cork pop and paid me a visit. He was swiftly followed by the senior consultant from ENT, a variety of other doctors, and a dentist. Other supporters from those early days included local lawyers, accountants, and a number of Worshipful Companies: Apothecaries, Butchers and Ironmongers.
In the early 1980’s a trip to Burgundy swiftly revealed that the finest wines were to be found from growers whose profound knowledge of their vines and individual soils enables the more talented to make wines of unsurpassed complexity and finesse.
Thirty years on and I still work with the same families behind these wonderful expressions of Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. Applying the same principles of locating growers dedicated to their terroirs and producing wines of true local character I now represent Domaines in all of France’s principal wine growing regions as well as a number from more obscure appellations.
You will find many of these wines on the lists of some of London’s most exciting and successful restaurants and wine bars, as well as in the cellars of private enthusiasts.
I have been very lucky in my choice of career. Apart from trading in wine, an endlessly changing and fascinating product, I have had the joy of working with both wine makers and consumers many of whom have become good friends over the years, not to mention some outstanding members of staff. Coupled with working in one of the most beautiful, historic, and vibrant parts of London I count myself extremely fortuitous.
"There are few people as respected in our wine trade as Robert Rolls"
Matthew Jukes Money Week 6th September 2019
My jump into the wine trade from a career in graphic design was born of passion, creative differences and several thousand misprinted leaflets.
In 2005 I joined Oddbins – still interesting, just – before moving into the fine wine trade proper with a role at an independent merchant in South Kensington. This provided a terrific opportunity to taste both the classic regions and beyond while learning the ins and outs of the wine market and how to polish glasses. Lots of glasses. The bottle from this time that really stands out was La Pousse d’Or Volnay 1er Cru Clos de la Bousse d’Or 1985. I’m not sure it changed my life, but I liked it very much.
Several years, jobs and numerous visits to the Côte later my passion for Burgundy, its vineyards, people and wines, its sheer complexity, remains as clear and compelling as the memory of that ’85.
What's happening at Robert Rolls
Recent tastings, information on our events and our growers, vintage updates, what we have been drinking, where we are eating and of course special offers on our wines!