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Bleak future for Wine Report as publisher pulls plug

The publisher of Wine Report, the annual wine guide written by Tom Stevenson and a host of wine experts, has confirmed that the current 2009 edition will be its last.

The guide was first published in 2003 by Dorling Kindersley (DK), but Stevenson said the number of copies it sold each year was not enough to justify the fees of the guide’s 45 writers, which included Huon Hooke, Clive Coates MW and Anthony Rose.

A DK spokeswoman said, ‘while we very much appreciate the value of Wine Report, unfortunately, for commercial reasons, DK is no longer in a position to publish it.’

Stevenson admitted its future does not look good, although he claimed that a number of publishers have shown an interest in reviving the guide.

‘Everybody in the trade who has ever seen Wine Report wants the next edition as soon as it’s published, so there is a potentially very loyal, repeat sales target readership out there, but I cannot believe the number of people I have come across in the wine trade who have never heard of it,’ he said.

‘I blame myself as much as DK for this lack of awareness.’

Stevenson also attributed poor sales to its failure to sell foreign-language editions.

However, Stevenson will continue to work with DK on a new edition of Sotheby’s Wine Encyclopedia.

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Written by Stuart Peskett

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