Appears in

Oxford Companion to Wine

Oxford Companion to Wine

By Jancis Robinson

Published 2006

  • About

brokers, important members of any trade, and increasingly important in the wine trade. Known charmingly as courtiers in French, brokers can play a vital role as middlemen between vine-growers and merchants, or négociants, collecting and exhibiting hundreds of samples, or échantillons, taking a small percentage of any eventual sale. Another class of brokers, further along the distribution chain, guide those who sell wine through the maze of those who produce it, some of them nursing ‘stables’ of producers rather in the manner of a literary agent representing a rollcall of authors. And then, just one or two links away from those who actually pull the cork, there are the fine wine brokers, those who sell from a list of glamorous properties and vintages which may, but often do not, belong to them.