Stephenson, who co-hosted Agile Media’s Class Bar Awards last month, is a drinks consultant, prolific spirits author and owner of a group of bars including London's Worship Street Whistling Shop and Black Rock.
A statement from Lidl UK read: “With an impressive breadth of knowledge and expertise, Tristan will help to further strengthen Lidl’s success in this category, which has recently seen notable year-on-year growth.”
“Tristan will taste the range to advise on NPD, as well as providing tasting notes and cocktail recipes for new and existing products. His expertise and insight will work as a guide for shoppers as they navigate the range in-store, making it easier to understand which spirits are best suited to their preferences and the buying occasion.”
The news follows Lidl’s wins at last month’s Drinks Retailing Awards (run by Agile Media), which saw the supermarket take home the top accolades for Supermarket of the Year and Multiple Spirits Retailer of the Year. These came on top of Lidl’s 2016 awards success, when it scooped the Spirits Supermarket of the Year at Agile Media's International Spirits Challenge for the second year running.
Stephenson said: “This is a really exciting time to be coming on board, and I look forward to working with the team to develop new and exciting liquids for the range – as well as offering advice to customers on what they should be buying, and for which occasions. I’ve been really impressed by the work of Lidl’s spirits buyers in recent years, and the resulting award wins are truly well-deserved.”