Charles Lea got into the business by mistake while working in Paris after leaving school. He went on to work at Chateau Latour and Moet & Chandon, followed by stints at Majestic and at Laytons where he was buying director. He founded L&S with Patrick Sandeman in 1988. A full-service wine merchant, with four shops in west London, the company has just launched a new private client team focusing mainly on customers who wish to make en primeur purchases, as well as those unable to visit the shop in person. L&S are devoted to quality, often waiting years to persuade their chosen producers to work with them. Italian reds are consumed regularly in the Lea household. ‘But then sometimes only Pinot Noir will do,’ he admits.