There is widespread speculation that Robert Parker is on the verge of parting company with Pierre Rovani and Daniel Thomases, both contributors to The Wine Advocate.

An informed source in the wine industry says that Parker is preparing to announce their departures and the hiring of two replacements.

The source, who was granted anonymity in order not to displease Parker, said the information had come directly from Parker.

Asked to confirm the report, Rovani said, ‘I will neither confirm nor deny what you’ve said to me.’ He said that he was still on the payroll.

Reached in Italy, Thomases said, ‘I will not comment on this for the moment.’

Both Rovani and Thomases said they preferred to speak with Parker before discussing the report any further.

decanter.com has phoned Parker’s office and asked for comment. None was forthcoming at the time of publication.

The industry source said that the Parker-Rovani separation was amicable and that a career change for Rovani was involved. The source declined to discuss Thomases.

Rovani, who joined Parker’s journal as a collaborator in 1996, has contributed reviews of wines from Burgundy, Oregon, Washington, the Loire, southern France (Languedoc-Roussillon) South Africa, Alsace, Germany, Austria, New Zealand and Champagne.

Daniel Thomases became an associate of Parker in 2003. A Florence resident, he specializes in Italian wines.

David Schildknecht, the German and Austrian wine specialist, is remaining at The Wine Advocate.

Written by Howard G Goldberg in New York