A sparkling Russian wine brand made its European debut at the LIWF in a bid to “make Russia the new New World in wine”.

Sparkling wine house Abrau-Durso, which claims to be the second-biggest wine brand in Russia, is launching the self-named range with five variants, positioned as an alternative to mid-priced Champagne.

“For now we are focusing distribution on Russia and former Soviet states, but we hope to be in the UK by the end of 2012,” said Boris Titov, head of Abrau-Durso. The winehouse was originally founded by Tsar Alexander II.