Scotland’s oldest wine merchant celebrates top drinks industry award

Cockburns of Leith, Scotland’s oldest wine and spirit merchant, has claimed a prestigious drinks industry prize.

Sept 2023

The Decanter Retailer Awards recognises the best drinks retailers up and down the country and Cockburns of Leith has been named this year’s winner of the “best regional wine shop – Scotland” award.

This is the latest milestone in a long and decorated history for Cockburns. The company, founded in the 18th century by brothers John and Robert Cockburn, originally counted the best and the brightest of Edinburgh’s elites among their customers, including the likes of Charles Dickens and Sir Walter Scott.

Cockburns was acquired in 2010 by Murray Capital and the Murray family has since revitalised the brand while remaining true to its legacy, rooted in the city of Edinburgh. Carrying on the tradition of the Cockburns, brothers Keith and David Murray have established the company’s flagship shop on Frederick Street, in the heart of the capital.

Since then, the brand has gone from strength to strength, most recently with the launch of a new wedding wine service and the recruitment of a dedicated wine ambassador, Malcolm Ogilvie.

Keith Murray, director of Cockburns of Leith, said:

“We are pleased and proud to receive the award from the Decanter judging panel. To be recognised as Scotland’s best wine shop is no small feat and is a testament to the achievements of the Cockburns team over the past year.

It’s been an absolute pleasure bringing the Cockburns of Leith brand back to life in our Frederick Street shop this past year and we are very grateful to all our customers for their support. We love bringing boutique wines and spirits to Edinburgh’s New Town, and being a destination for shoppers keen to discover special birthday gifts, celebrations, wedding presents, wines for dinner parties, Sunday picnics, after-work treats, and everything in between.”

Cockburns of Leith was originally founded in the 18th century by John and Robert Cockburn: two brothers who set out to serve the upper crust of Edinburgh with the very best imported wines. Their shop was frequented by the great and good of the day, boasting the likes of Charles Dickens, Sir Walter Scott and King George IV among its clientele. Today, Cockburns is continuing this legacy through its growing range of bespoke services.

Customers can contact the team directly by emailing or calling 0131 603 3333.