Bunhill: Bulgarian wine promotion

AT LAST week's London Wine Trade Fair, Margarit Todorov was proudly displaying the Royal Warrant he (yes, he) had obtained from King Simeon of Bulgaria in the hope of promoting Bulgarian wines into the serious winebore league.

Todorov has always been an entrepreneurial sort of chap. As an employee of the Bulgarian state monopoly, he'd been the hero of the first surge of the Vulgar Bulgar into Britain's supermarkets.

The surge was interrupted when he had to return to Sofia to answer charges of un-Socialist behaviour. And given the chance, he proved the accusations totally justified by setting up Domaine Boyar, now selling more than a million cases of wine a year, in competition with his former employers.

A friend of his, Rosa Georgieva, who's been in contact with the King ever since the Old Days, persuaded Simeon to lend his name to some of Todorov's products without any kickbacks - liquid or monetary.

Alas, even the Royal Seal of approval hasn't persuaded Sainsbury to charge more than a fiver for wines that are really rather good.

(Photograph omitted)