Regional chairs

Edward Adams MW

Spain

Edward joined the wine trade in 1983, working at Howells off-licence in Bristol. He then worked at Wines from Spain (1985-86) before joining Co-op as a buyer in 1987, ending up as bulk wines and spirits buyer. He became MW in 1991 and joined Western Wines in 1994. He left Western Wines in February 2006 to work with Bruce Jack of Flagstone, South Africa. Although Flagstone has been taken over by Constellation, he continues to work with Bruce on their Spanish wine project, La Báscula. Judged 2009

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Nick Adams MW

Champagne

Nick was drifted into the wine trade after graduating with a Business Studies degree in 1982 and became an immediate hostage. Waving instantly good-bye to earning any serious money he has ploughed on relentlessly since, culminating in passing the MW in 1992, thereby ending any credentials to being commercial astute in an instant. Nick has worked with some of the most fantastic people and producers imaginable, including Ridge, Henschke, Petaluma, de Vogue, Bonneau du Martray, Champagne Pierre Gimonnet, Gaja, Sassicaia, Giacosa, and Chateau Lafleur. Judged 2009

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Sarah Ahmed

Loire, Portugal, Spain

Sarah Ahmed, The Wine Detective, is a lawyer turned wine writer who started off her wine career with Oddbins in 2000 and took top honours in the WSET Diploma in 2003. In addition to writing for wine magazines she has contributed to The World Atlas of Wine, Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book (Portugal) and Oz Clarke’s Pocket Wine Book (Loire). Hands on experience includes stints at Torres in Spain, Boekenhoutskloof in South Africa and Cullen in Australia. Judged 2009

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Nicola Arcedeckne-Butler MW

Bordeaux Judged 2009

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Tony Aspler

Italy

Tony Aspler has been writing about wine for over 30 years. He was the wine columnist for The Toronto Star for 21 years and has authored fourteen books on wine and food, including The Wine Atlas of Canada and Vintage Canada. In December 2007, Tony was awarded the Order of Canada. In February 2001, Tony co-founded the charity Grapes for Humanity which raises money through the wine community for the victims of landmines and children with disabilities. Tony is a member of the Circle of Wine Writers. Judged 2009

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Essi Avellan MW

Champagne

Essi is the only Master of Wine from Finland and the second ever from the Nordic countries. Essi is the Editor of the FINE Champagne Magazine and the Editorial Adviser of the FINE-magazines. Additionally, Avellan contributes internationally to a number of newspapers and wine and food magazines. Her main expertise area and passion is champagne. She has been working in the wine business for ten years. Judged 2009

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John Avery MW

South Africa

John has racked up 40 years in the wine trade and runs the renowned wine merchant Avery’s of Bristol. Judged 2009

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Isabelle Bachelard

Languedoc-Roussillon, Regional France Judged 2009

Freelance wine journalist, Isabelle Bachelard is based in Paris where she writes for Revue du Vin de France, Revue vinicole internationale, Guide Cuisine, Cuisine Gourmande and Club Cigare. She trained with Steven Spurrier when he had his wine school l’Académie du Vin in Paris.

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Anthony Barne MW

Austria

Anthony Barne made the small step from the Army to the wine trade in 1978, having developed the interest while serving on the Governor of Gibraltar’s staff. After a year in a wine shop, followed by a brief spell working at Domaine Thenard in Burgundy, his career until 1992 was in mail order and wine buying, first with Hicks & Don and then Harveys. Since then he has been a wine auctioneer with Phillips and Bonhams as well as writing and acting as a consultant to Hicks & Don. Judged 2009

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Gerard Barnes

South Africa

I joined Oddbins in 1988 as trainee assistant manager at their Farringdon store. I had studied law at university but decided it wasn’t the career for me. In May 1990 I joined G&J Greenalls as a trainee buyer, promoted to full buyer in 1991. Headhunted by Sainsburys in May 1994, buying France and Eastern Europe, with a responsibility for the Calais store, I left to join Raisin Social in August 1998, where I am responsible for buying and product development. Judged 2009

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Filippo Bartolotta

Italy

Filippo’s career in the wine world started in 1998 with the organisation of corporate wine events. He is the managing director of Le Baccanti, Italy’s premier wine travel agency, and teaches professional wine lore at the University of Siena. In the twin capacities of one of the tasters for L’Espresso Italian Wine Guide, the nation’s top seller, and editor of its English version, he is called upon to taste several thousand wines a year. Judged 2009

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Liz Berry MW

Languedoc-Roussillon, Regional France

My first job in the wine trade was selling bottles and stacking shelves for Europa Foods and the Wine and Beer Shops, both part of the Vince Food and Wine Group. I was promoted to wine buyer for the group in 1979. I passed my Master of Wine in 1980 and, with my husband Mike, opened La Vigneronne Fine Wines in 1981. We sold the shop in 2003. I am now a director of Grand Cru Wines, importing fine wines from southern France to the UK, and selling mainly to the restaurant trade. Judged 2009

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Michel Bettane

Burgundy, Languedoc-Roussillon Judged 2009

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Bruno Besa

Italy Judged 2009

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Nick Bielak

Italy

In 1996, Nick moved to Italy and shortly afterwards entered the wine business hosting wine tours, tastings, and translating brochures and tasting notes. In 1999 he started working for a Puglian wine estate before becoming its sales and marketing manager. In 2003 he joined Bibendum Wine before moving to Vinexus, London specialists in Italian wines in 2006. Judged 2009

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David Bird MW

Spain

Trained as an analytical chemist and started life analysing baby foods and orange squash in Norwich. Entered wine trade in 1973 when Colman’s of Norwich bought a wine business. Became Master of Wine in 1981 and QA Manager for Stowells of Chelsea in 1984, responsible for the quality of Wine Box production. Set up own consultancy business in 1994 and still going strong. Author of Understanding Wine Technology, which has become the standard reference book for Diploma and MW students. Judged 2009

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Beverley Blanning MW

Burgundy

Beverley Blanning is an independent wine journalist, based in London. She is a regular feature writer and taster for Decanter magazine and writes for a number of publications internationally, including Wall Street Journal Europe, World of Fine Wine, Quarterly Review of Wines and Sommelier Journal. Beverley is an experienced international competition judge. She also presents and educates about wine, through consumer tastings, corporate and trade events. Judged 2009

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Nigel Blundell

Germany Judged 2009

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Jane Boyce MW

Austria, Burgundy

Jane Boyce, MW is an independent Wine Consultant and freelance wine writer. She has twenty years experience in the Wine trade, spanning all sectors of the business from buying to selling and shipping to marketing as well as the composition of wine lists for hotels and restaurants and the training of their staff. She has worked with various importers in London and Northern Ireland including James Nicholson and Gilbeys. In 2000 she became Ireland’s first female Master of Wine and is still the only person to hold the qualification in Northern Ireland. Judged 2009

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Julian Brind MW

Port & Madeira

Julian has more than 40 years’ experience in the wine trade. In 1967 he won both a Bourse de Voyage Scholarship and the Vintners Scholarship. He passed his Master of Wine examination in 1970 and joined Waitrose the following year. Julian has been the Chairman of Trustees of the Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) since 1986. In 1993 he was Chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine and was Chairman of the Institute’s Examining Panel for many years. Judged 2009

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Alison Buchanan

Bordeaux Judged 2009

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Mark Buckenham

Port & Madeira Judged 2009

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Joel Butler MW

Canada, Alsace, Italy

Shortly after graduation from Stanford, Joel came to Europe in 1972, visiting wine producing regions and doing a harvest in Burgundy. He returned to California in 1973 and entered the wine trade with a noted retailer in San Francisco. Butler subsequently became a wine importer, Buyer/Manager, and sales manager. He was one of the first two Americans to pass the rigorous Master of Wine examination in 1990. He is a Vice President of the Institute of Masters of Wine, North America. Judged 2009

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Luis Capitao

Central & Eastern Europe

Luis is an international wine consultant and importer with vast commercial experience in US and other international markets. A twenty-year veteran who spent half of his career marketing Constellation’s wines in the U.S. and abroad, Luis was also responsible for the launch of Yellow Tail in the US. More recently, Luis founded Touchstone Wines, a US-based wine importing and consultancy. He currently resides in Palo Alto, California. Judged 2009

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Samantha Caporn

Australia, Central & Eastern Europe, Greece

Samantha has been in the wine trade for 12 years, starting as Tastings Co-ordinator for Wine Magazine in 2001. In 2005 she was a buyer for Direct Wines before joining Constellation Wines as wine development manager in 2009. She is currently working towards her Master of Wine. Judged 2009

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Poh Tiong Ch’ng

Rhône, Italy Judged 2009

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Oz Clarke

Australia

Oz Clarke’s wine career began when he captained the wine-tasting team for Oxford University. After graduating, Oz spent a number of years as an actor before turning to writing professionally in 1984, Oz was by then a leading West End actor. He has been wine correspondent of The Daily Telegraph. He has written Oz Clarke’s New Essential Wine Book, a further sixteen editions of his Wine Guide and The Pocket Wine Book, and host of other, hugely popular books on wine. Oz was a presenter of BBC TV’s Food and Drink programme where his remarkable tasting ability has won him great notoriety. More recently, Oz joined Top Gear’s James May for Oz and James’s Big Wine Adventure of which two series were aired on BBC 2. Oz Clarke lives in West London, where, when not writing about wine, he likes to avoid drinking altogether (except for the occasional pint of Fuller’s ESB), playing any sport he can lay his hands on and dreaming wistfully of lying on a palm-fringed sandy beach somewhere near to the Equator. Judged 2009

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Peter Cobb

Port & Madeira, Portugal Judged 2009

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Richard Cocksedge

Portugal Judged 2009

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Miguel Côrte-Real

Portugal Judged 2009

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Phil Crozier

Argentina Judged 2009

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Steve Daniel

Greece Judged 2009

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Sue Daniels

Champagne Judged 2009

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Dawn Davies

Regional France, Spain

Dawn joined Selfridges as their first Sommelier in March 2007. Previously, Dawn worked as the head sommelier and then restaurant manager in The Ledbury restaurant in Notting Hill and as sommelier at the Square Restaurant in Mayfair. Before that she was the Head Sommelier at Boxwood Café (Gordon Ramsay) and Zuma. At Selfridges, Dawn is on hand to help people select that special case of wine, give advice in the set up of a new cellar, or just help with the growth of an established one. Judged 2009

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Sergio de Luca

Italy

I am Italian with a degree in Winemaking. I come from a farming family and spent all my life in the wine business. I arrived in this country in 1981 with the Italian Trade Centre and after few experiences with other Italian wine importers in the UK, I started work with Enotria where I have been for the last 22 years. Judged 2009

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Gearoid Devaney

Germany

Gearoid has been Chef Sommelier at Tom Aikens restaurant since it opened in 2003. He recently won the UK Sommelier of the year 2009. Gearoid was the Restaurant magazine Sommelier of the year 2007, and the winner of the London regional final for the Ruinart sommelier of the year 2006 and 2007. In 2006 Gearoid passed his Advanced Master Sommelier exams. Prior to Tom Aikens, Gearoid worked at L’Oranger in St James’s and at three Michelin-starred Pierre Gagnaire in Paris. Judged 2009

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Denise Diesen

Burgundy, Rhône

American-French Canadian born Denise has spent the past 20 years in fine wine. Having moved to London in 1984, she decided to combine experience in finance with the passion of wine. After a decade in international banking and several years as a finance officer for a private energy company, in 1988 she began creating cellars of fine wine from Bordeaux, Burgundy and the Rhone Valley for discriminating collectors worldwide. With a base there, particular interest is focused on the Burgundy region. Judged 2009

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Vianna Dirceu Jr.

Chile

Dirceu Vianna Junior, originally from Brazil, has been living in London since 1989. His career in the wine business started 19 years ago. He is studying his Master of Wine. Junior is the Wine Development Director at Coe Vintners where he has worked for the last ten years. Judged 2009

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Nick Dumergue

Australia Judged 2009

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Sally Easton MW

New Zealand

Sally is one of few wine writers to have both the MW and a masters degree in journalism. Her business (WineWisdom) encompasses a portfolio of activities focused on freelance writing and editorial work, trade and consumer education, and wine industry consultancy. As well as writing for many trade and consumer publications at home and abroad, she teaches to Diploma level for the Wine and Spirit Education Trust, and is an international wine judge. Judged 2009

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Maria Elener

South Africa

Maria has been in the wine trade since 1995, starting with Majestic Wines as graduate trainee. She then travelled in South America and worked in the trade in Chile before returning to work at the newly opened Vinopolis in London. From there she went to The Wine Society as part of the tastings team and finally arrived at the Co-operative as Wine Buyer 5 years ago. Her responsibilities are currently South America, South Africa, Iberia, Italy, Germany and Fairtrade. Judged 2009

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Sarah Jane Evans MW

Spain

Sarah Jane Evans is a writer and broadcaster. She has judged at wine shows in Australia, Chile, Georgia, Germany and Portugal as well as the UK. She has a special interest in Sherry and in Spanish wines in general. She became a Master of Wine in 2006.’ Judged 2009

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Simon Field MW

Languedoc-Roussillon

A reformed Chartered Accountant, I have worked in the Wine Trade since 1996, for BBR since 1998. I am buyer for Champagne, Germany, Austria, England, Spain, Portugal fortified wine, Beaujolais, South America and of course, the Languedoc. A small bijou portfolio,then! Judged 2009

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Elizabeth Gabay MW

Languedoc-Roussillon

After graduating with a history degree and a couple of years in publishing, the theatre and backpacking, Elizabeth concentrated on wine. Since the mid 1980s she has specialised in the wines of south eastern France. Until having children, Elizabeth was an independent wine merchant, educator, consultant, corporate events host and lecturer on historic wines. She graduated as a Master of Wine in 1998. Since moving to south east France in 2002 she has continued teaching and has been working on her first book. Judged 2009

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Vashti Galpin

South AfricaVashti Galpin qualified as a Cape Wine Master in 2006 after starting formal wine studies in 1999. Her CWM research report “Comparison of legislation about winemaking additives and processes” compares the legislation of South Africa, Australia, New Zealand, the European Union and the USA regarding additives, processes and labelling. She has set exams and lectured for the Cape Wine Academy in Johannesburg. Dr Galpin is a computer science academic and currently works at the University of Edinburgh. From 1997 to 2007, she lectured at University of the Witwatersrand in Johannesburg. Judged 2009

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Caroline Gilby MW

Central & Eastern Europe

Dr Caroline Gilby MW is a freelance writer specialising in Central & Eastern Europe. She contributes to several publications including Decanter, the Oxford Companion to Wine and Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Book. She has a PhD in plant sciences but left science to become senior wine buyer for a major UK retail chain. Caroline also works as an independent consultant to the wine trade and wine educator, and judges at several international wine competitions. She has been in the wine business 20 years. Judged 2009

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David Gleave MW

Australia Judged 2009

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Robert Gorjak

Central & Eastern Europe

Robert lives near Ljubljana, Slovenia, where he has written about wine since 1994. Beside regular contributions to Slovenian periodicals he is a contributor to the Oxford Wine Companion and Wine Atlas. He is the author of the Wine guide – Slovenia 2009. He has judged several national and international wine competitions. He and his wife founded first Slovenian wine school Belvin where he also teaches. Judged 2009

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Alun Griffiths MW

Bordeaux Judged 2009

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David Guimaraens

Port & Madeira

Sixth generation of the founder of Fonseca Guimaraens and eldest son of Bruce Guimaraens, Fonseca winemaker from 1961 to ’95, he might have been expected to consider following suit. At age 18, he set out to experience winemaking in Australia, California and Oregon. David Guimaraens formalized his education in oenology at Roseworthy Agricultural College in South Australia. After graduating and working in Australia, he returned to Portugal in 1990 to join the Fonseca winemaking team and has been instrumental in producing the Fonseca and Taylor Fladgate wines since 1991. David Guimaraens serves as a Director of Taylor Fladgate and Fonseca, overseeing the winemaking of both houses. Judged 2009

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Daniel Hart

South Africa Judged 2009

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Margaret Harvey MW

New Zealand

I was born and educated in Auckland, New Zealand. My interest was always wine and when I came to the UK on a “two year” working holiday in 1975, I attended the various courses run by the WSET. I started Fine Wines of New Zealand in 1985 by importing 100 cases of wines from small family-run properties. I passed the Master of Wine exam in 1991. In 1998, I was awarded the New Zealand Order of Merit. In 2006 I was awarded Honorary Life Member to New Zealand Winegrowers for services to the industry. Judged 2009

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Andrew Hawes

Australia, Bordeaux, Spain

Andrew joined Oddbins in early 80s, managing various London shops. He was Bentalls wine Buyer from 1988 to 1996 before moving onto become Selfridges’ head wine Buyer in 1996. He joined McKinley Vintners as General Manager in January 2007. He has been in the wine business 27 years and 7 months. Judged 2009

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Ben Henshaw

Languedoc-Roussillon, Regional France, Spain

Ben joined the wine trade in 2002 to work on the sales and marketing of Domaine Saint Hilaire, his families’ newly acquired Languedoc vineyard. He set up Indigo Wine the following year focusing initially on importing wines from Southern France. Since then he has broadened the range to include one of the UK’s best Spanish portfolios. Ben is also a regular taster at the Decanter panel tastings. Judged 2009

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Roger Higgs

ChileJudged 2009

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Christian Honorez

Rhône Judged 2009

Amy Hopkinson

Spain

Amy is a New Zealand winemaker. She studied at Lincoln University and then worked in New Zealand, Australia, Italy and Spain. She has been based in Spain for the last 6 years and is a Spanish wine specialist. Judged 2009

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John Hoskins MW

Australia

John was born into a family of hoteliers but had no intention of joining his relations, studying English literature instead. However, he took over the family’s wine-buying while studying for his exams and became the first person in the restaurant business to become a Master of Wine. In 1994, he formed his own company – Huntsbridge – a group of Chef-run restaurants offering top quality wine and food in an informal setting. He now owns a single hotel-restaurant: The Old Bridge at Huntingdon, Cambs. Judged 2009

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Justin Howard-Sneyd MW

Languedoc-Roussillon

Justin entered the wine trade in 1991 when he worked as a ‘helper’ on the International Wine Challenge. In the following 6 years, he worked in a small wine shop, ran wine tasting courses, did a stint with Oddbins, and worked 6 vintages in South Africa, France, Hungary and Romania. In 1997, he joined Safeway as a buyer, and began to study for the Master of Wine exam. Justin became a Master of Wine in 1999. He spent five years as a wine buyer for Sainsbury’s and joined the Waitrose team in September 2005. Judged 2009

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Alex Hunt

USA

Alex joined the wine trade as a van driver for Oddbins while studying Philosophy and Psychology at Oxford, where he captained the Varsity Blind Tasting team. He joined Mayfair Cellars in 2000, holding both sales and buying roles. In 2006 he moved to Berkmann Wine Cellars, where he is currently Purchasing Director. Alex passed the theory and tasting components of the Master of Wine exams at the first attempt in 2004, and remains at the dissertation stage. Judged 2009

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Tim Johnston

Australia

I entered the wine business in 1966 as one of the last trainees at Hedges & Butler. I spent eight months in 1967 working as a slave (‘stagiaire’) at Château Cantenac Brown, working in the vines (with horses) and in the cellars. I left England in the summer of ’69. I worked with Melvyn Master in Aix until 1978 shipping wine to America. In 1976 I married one of Melvyn’s aupair girls and after crossing the states on a motorbike, I did a harvest at Montelena. Stephanie and I fell in love with the life in California and over the next few years I worked (illegally of course) a few months nearly every year – either making wine, or working in the French Laundry, when it was a ‘real restaurant’. Judged 2009

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Tony Jordan

Australia

After obtaining a PhD in Physical chemistry from the University of Sydney Tony’s early career was as a Research Scientist. He became involved in the wine industry as a Lecturer in Oenology at Charles Sturt University, before establishing (with Brian Croser) the winemaking consultancy, Oenotec, which consulted on wine and viticulture to 30 wineries in Australia, New Zealand, USA and France over a ten year period. Towards the end of this period in 1986, Tony was engaged by Moët & Chandon, initially as a Consultant and later as Managing Director / Winemaker and established Domaine Chandon / Green Point in the Yarra Valley, Victoria. In the 1990’s Tony’s role was expanded to that of Consultant Winemaker to the Chandon wineries in California, Argentina and Brazil. In 2003 he was appointed to his current position as CEO/Winemaker of the three Moët-Hennessy Wine Estates Group of wineries in Australia and New Zealand, namely Domaine Chandon / Green Point in Victoria, Cape Mentelle in West Australia and Cloudy Bay in New Zealand. Judged 2009

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Darrel Joseph

Central & Eastern Europe

Darrel is based in Vienna, Austria, and began writing about the wines of Central, Eastern and Southeastern Europe in 1995, when Hungary´s Tokaji and Grüner Veltliner and Riesling from Austria captured his palate. Since then, his work has appeared in publications including Decanter, decanter.com, Wine Spectator, Hugh Johnson´s Pocket Wine Guide and Harpers. Darrel also conducts wine tastings and seminars internationally. Judged 2009

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Martin Lam

Chile

In 1981 he opened Le Caprice as head chef with Chris Corbin and Jeremy King, before moving to L’Escargot as Head chef in 1982. Throughout the 80s L’Escargot was the centre of the wine world in London with tastings, wine lunches and dinners every week. In 1992, he set up Ransome’s Dock with his wife. The restaurant is used for tastings and dinners by winemakers from around the world. Martin is an Academician Mentor of the Academy of Culinary Arts and a member of The Master Chefs of Great Britain. Judged 2009

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Jeannie Cho Lee

Middle East, Far East & Asia

Born in Korea, Jeannie Cho Lee’s interest in wine began at Oxford University and compelled her to take wine classes whenever she had the chance. She writes regularly for various international magazines, including Wine Spectator, The World of Fine Wine, and Revue du Vin. An in-demand judge at international wine competitions and an educator, Jeannie has been teaching Wine and Spirit Education Trust courses since 2004. Jeannie is working towards her Master of Wine and is also a Certified Wine Educator. Judged 2009

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Isabelle Legeron

Australia, Italy

Growing up on a vineyard in Cognac, Isabelle spent her younger life tending vines with her family, picking walnuts, figs and making sausages. Today, Isabelle leads sell-out courses at The Wine School, which she co-founded with London’s Divertimenti store. Her company Wine Lab hosts bespoke wine-tasting and gastronomic events for clients in the City and she is currently working towards her Master of Wine. Isabelle makes regular appearances on television, both domestically and internationally and has just completed her third series of Journey into Wine that has seen her traveling to South Africa, Spain, Portugal and Australia. Judged 2009

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Joanna Locke MW

South Africa

After starting in Harrods wine dept, Jo spent four years at London wholesaler Michael Morgan. From there, she joined Grants of St James’s in Guildford, before moving to Cellarworld and The Fulham Road Wine Centre in London. She passed the Master of Wine exam in 1990. In 1991 Jo became a wine buyer at Threshers before joining John E Fells & Sons in 2000. Since 2004, Jo has been a wine buyer at The Wine Society. She was elected Chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine in 2006. Judged 2009

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Matthieu Longuère

Portugal, Spain

Originally from Bordeaux, I studied catering at college for 6 years before coming to England in 1994. Since then I worked as a head sommelier at Lucknam Park near Bath, the Hotel du Vin in Bristol and La Trompette Restaurant in Chiswick. I won the UK Sommelier of the year competition Trophée Ruinart in 2000, passed the WSET Diploma in 2002 and became a Master Sommelier in 2005. I speak French, Spanish, English and basic Swedish. Judged 2009

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Luciana Lynch

Italy

During her 35 years in the Wine Trade, Luciana Lynch held senior positions with leading UK companies such as Hedges & Butler, Findlater Matta, Remy Associés and Enotria, before setting up her own business and consultancy in the late eighties. Her entire career saw her engaged in selling and sourcing wines, especially from Italy. Luciana also played a significant part as an educator. Although now retired, Luciana is still regarded as one of the country’s most knowledgeable authorities on Italian wines. Judged 2009

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Ken Mackay MW

Central & Eastern Europe, South Africa

Ken has worked in the wine trade since graduating from Oxford in 1999. He joined the Waitrose buying team in March 2009, prior to which he worked for five years as a wine buyer for an independent merchant. Ken became a Master of Wine in 2006 at the age of 28, winning several scholarships in the process, and remains the youngest MW in the world. He is now wine buyer at Waitrose and responsible for sourcing wines from North America, Germany, Eastern Europe and England. Judged 2009

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Pierre Mansour

USA

After an introduction into the wine trade in 1995 with the Antique Wine Company, I spent 4 years with Berry Bros & Rudd as Duty Manager of their Heathrow store. I completed the WSET Diploma in 1998. From there I joined Vinopolis as Tastings’ Manager. In 2000, I joined The Wine Society, overseeing tastings and events. I took on the role of Buyer at The Wine Society in 2004. I currently buy the Society’s Australian, New Zealand, Spanish and Lebanese wines. I am also studying for the Master of Wine. Judged 2009

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Alessandro Marchesan

Australia Judged 2009

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Tim Marson

Spain

Tim entered the wine trade with Oddbins in 1997. He worked for Lea & Sandeman, The Winery, Wimbledon Wine Cellars, and Richards Walford in a variety of sales, management and buying roles. In 2006 he joined Bibendum Wine as a buyer. His areas of responsibility include France, North America, Iberia, Germany, Austria. Judged 2009

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Jöelle Marti

Chile Judged 2009

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Peter McCombie MW

Italy

Peter McCombie is a restaurant wine consultant and writer. An authority on the wines of Italy and Spain he is a frequent judge of wine competitions and is a teacher and lively public speaker. Judged 2009

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Helen McEvoy

Spain

After University, I took up a role as a Graduate Trainee Buyer at Sainsbury’s. My time at Sainsbury’s was spent in the Wine Department where I bought wine from Spain, South America, Germany, Portugal and managed the Organic wine range. In 2006 I joined Threshers as a Wine Buyer and at various points looked after Spain, Portugal, France, Germany, North America, South America, Champagne, Sparkling wines and Fortified wines. I joined Spar as a Wine Trading Manager and look after some PR and marketing. Judged 2009

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Maggie McNie MW

Greece Judged 2009

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Philippe Messy

Languedoc-Roussillon, Regional France, Italy Judged 2009

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Anthony Moss

Bordeaux, Loire, Spain

In 1999, I started working part-time for S.H.Jones (Leamington Spa) while completing post-graduate research in theoretical physics. After short stints at Thresher and Sainsbury’s, I joined the WSET in 2004. I was given the task of finding out how the qualifications and materials could be improved. Since then, alongside updating and writing textbooks, I have been studying for the Master of Wine exam. I am currently Research and Development Director and the WSET. Judged 2009

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Rebecca Murphy

USA

Over the course of 35 years, Rebecca has risen from being the first female wine steward in Texas, to forming her own consulting firm, Vintage Productions, to becoming an accredited writer of wine-related articles. She is also well known for founding several of the country’s most successful wine competitions. She also continues to develop seminars, wine tastings and dinners to educate consumers and members of the trade on all aspects of wine production, tasting and enjoyment. Judged 2009

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Peter Nixson

South Africa, USA Judged 2009

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Marcel Orford-Williams

Alsace, Regional France

After a degree in History, Marcel joined the retail wine trade where he learned the nuts and bolts of selling wine on the shop floor. In 1987 he joined The IEC Wine Society as buyer, where he has specialised almost exclusively in French wines. The Wine Society is one of the most important shippers of fine wine from the Rhône Valley, Alsace and top estates in Languedoc Roussillon and southwest France. Marcel has played a significant part in making these wines better known to over 100,000 members of The Wine Society who buy each year. He also buys Champagne and Beaujolais for The Wine Society. Judged 2009

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Michael Palij MW

Italy

Michael was born in 1966 in Toronto, Canada. In 1989 he emigrated to the UK after reading English and Philosophy at the University of Toronto and joined Oddbins where he worked for four years. Four years later, he was recruited by Windrush Wines as their wine buyer and in 1995 he formed the independent wine importers, ‘Winetraders’. He writes for numerous magazines and books. An accredited tutor with the Wine and Spirit Education Trust for Foundation, Intermediate, Professional and Advanced Certificates and Diploma, he also lectures in England, Ireland, Barbados, Spain and Norway. Judged 2009

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Rebecca Palmer

USA

Rebecca has worked as Commercial Buyer for Corney & Barrow for the past 2 years. She is responsible for the C&B’s core wine portfolio for both the Merchanting and Wine bars’ businesses, covering all world regions. Prior to that Rebecca was buyer at Laithwaites specialized in France and South America. A modern languages graduate, she has worked in the wine trade for over 12 years. Judged 2009

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Christine Parkinson

Australia, New Zealand, Spain

Chrsitine is Group Wine Buyer for Hakkasan. She is responsible for wine in Alan Yau’s restaurants: Hakkasan (London & Istanbul), Yauatcha, Busaba, Sake No Hana and Cha Cha Moon. Christine qualified as a Chef over 25 years ago, progressing into Food & Beverage Management and Operations Director roles. Having bought wine for every restaurant she worked with, she moved into her dream job six years ago, buying wine for Hakkasan. Christine holds the WSET Diploma, and is studying for Master of Wine. Judged 2009

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Sebastian Payne MW

Italy

Educated at Tonbridge School and Trinity College, Oxford Sebastian holds MA degrees in Literae Humaniores (Latin and Classical Greek) and in Medieval and Modern Greek. He started in the wine trade in 1970 working for Fred May, a shipper specialising in wines of France, Germany and Hungary. He joined The Wine Society in 1973 as Promotions Manager responsible for publications. In 1985 he became Chief Buyer travelling to all major wine regions in the world. He passed his Masters of Wine in 1977. He was Chairman of the Masters of Wine Institute in 1995 and Chairman of Masters of Wine Examiners in 1996. He is also a Chevalier dans l’ordre du Mérite Agricole. Judged 2009

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David Peppercorn MW

Bordeaux Judged 2009

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Barbara Philip MW

Canada, Spain

Barbara Philip MW is a Portfolio Manager at the British Columbia Liquor Distribution Branch and is responsible for selecting European wines for the BC Liquor Store chain. Barbara has a long history working as a sommelier and wine educator and, in 2007, became the 1st Western Canadian to achieve the Master of Wine designation. In addition to her role at the BCLDB, Barbara works as a freelance lecturer, radio columnist and wine judge through Barbariain Wine Consulting, a company she runs with her husband Iain. Judged 2009

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Fabricio Portelli

Argentina

I have been a professional sommelier (ASI) and wine journalist since 2000. I have been the wine editor of some of the best wine & food magazines in Argentina during the last eight years: JOY (2000-2004), Elgourmet (2004-2007); and now I am publisher of El Conocedor magazine. I am an international wine judge (Vinitaly 2004 and Concours Mondial de Bruxelles Maastricht 2007, Bordeaux 2008). I am working hard to be the most recognized refrence for argentinian wines, not only here but in the rest of the World. Judged 2009

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Freddy Price

Alsace, Germany

Freddy started in the wine trade in 1953. He joined Dolamore, a family-owned London wine merchant in 1955. This company changed hands and in 1985 Freddy decided to look for greener pastures. He then represented a number of French and German wine estates in England, as well as writing occasionally for Decanter and participating in many panel tastings. In 2002 he retired in order to concentrate on wine writing. This involved travelling the world with his wife Janet to write his book Riesling Renaissance. Judged 2009

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Luis Aguilar Pryde

Spain

Luis was born and brought up in Australia. After finishing degrees in engineering and economics, like many countrymen he made the move to Europe. Soon after arriving in Madrid in 1993, he started a wine importing and distribution business where he introduced Australian wine to Spain. He regularly teaches wine tasting to both enthusiasts and sommeliers. After a three year stint at Real Madrid Television he currently works with the Spanish news service, Agencia EFE. Judged 2009

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Margaret Rand

Bordeaux

Margaret Rand is a previous editor of Wine Magazine, Wine & Spirit International and Whisky Magazine. As a writer Decanter is, naturally, her true love, but she is also close to World of Fine Wine and has wild flings with Wine & Spirit and Drinks Business, and the occasional flirtation with the FT. She is general editor of Hugh Johnson’s Pocket Wine Book, and her latest book, Grapes & Wines (with Oz Clarke), has just been updated and is an utter bargain. Judged 2009

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Juan Carlos Rincón

Spain

Juan Carlos is a journalist, radio & TV presenter, professional taster and Wine Specialist for the BBC (Spanish Department). His expertise is in wines of Latin America (Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, Brasil, Perú, Bolivia, Colombia, México), wines from Spain and France, especifically Saint Emilion and Chateauneuf du Pape. He loves and has a lot of experience with Cabernet Franc, Carmenere and Grenache. Judged 2009

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Liz Robertson MW

Central & Eastern Europe

Liz has over 30 years experience in the wine business, seven of which were spend at Matthew Clark, six at Green’s of

the Royal Exchange, 12 at Safeway supermarkets and eight as an independent consultant. Judged 2009

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Thomas Rooch

Italy

Thomas speaks and writes fluent Chinese, German, English and some Japanese. Currently, he is the Chief Operating Officer of AWSEC – Asia Wine Service & Education Centre in Hong Kong. Thomas is a distinguished member of The Sommeliers of Asia, official ‘Ambassador of German Wine’ by the German Wine Institute, and has been a member of various international wine judging panels, including the Decanter World Wine Awards, Singapore’s Lianhe Zaobao Wine Challenge, and the ICCCW in Beijing among others. Judged 2009

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Nick Room

Chile

Nick joined Waitrose in 1987, initially buying beers and spirits before moving into wine. Passing the Diploma of the Wine and Spirit Education Trust in 1992, he then bought wine for the mail order side of the business before returning to the main buying office in 1998. Nick’s speciality is Spain and Portugal and is responsible for an award-winning list of Sherry and also National Portuguese Retailer of the Year 2005 and 2006. Judged 2009

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Hugo Rose MW

Bordeaux

After almost 20 years with UK fine wine merchants Lay & Wheeler, Hugo set up his own consultancy offering a variety of intellectual services to the wine industry. These include expert advice, project development and implementation, cellar maturity evaluation and corporate presentations. He is a frequent contributor to wine journals in both the UK and abroad. He became a Master of Wine in 1992, serving as Chairman of the Institute in 2002. Judged 2009

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Mark Savage MW

Burgundy, Germany

Mark Savage was born in 1949 in Kampala, Uganda. He was President of the Oxford University Wine Circle 1969/1970 and also a member of the Oxford v. Cambridge wine tasting team 1970/71. He was awarded the Vintners Company Scholarship in 1975 and became a Master of Wine in 1980. He is also the author of ‘The Red Wines of Burgundy’ (Octopus Press 1988), a recognised Authority on the wines of the USA Pacific Northwest, honorary Director of the first International Pinot Noir Celebration, Oregon and is best known as proprietor and Chief Executive of Savage Selection, a UK wine importer, wholesaler, and retailer, that currently works with around 100 small wine estates in 15 different countries. Judged 2009

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Michèle Shah

Italy

Michèle is a wine, food and travel writer based in Italy for over 30 years. She writes articles for specialist magazines including Decanter, Wine Spectator, Wine Business International, Vini, Slowfood, Corriere Vinicolo, Wino Magazyn and Der Feinschmecker, and most recently Sommelier India and Le Connoisseur (Puerto Rico). She is also a consultant to the Italian wine trade, organizing tasting events and workshops. In 2006 Mitchell Beazley published the new, revised edition of Wines of Italy under her authorship. Judged 2009

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Andrew Shaw

Rhône

Andrew Shaw’s career in wine began at Oddbins, managing branches whilst studying the Wine Diploma before gaining further winery experience with six months in New Zealand. Subsequently wine buying, largely with mail order specialist, providing considerable opportunity to travel around the world, before joining Waitrose in January 2007. He is wine buyer at Waitrose and responsible for Bordeaux, Rhone, South of France, Italy and South Africa. Andrew is currently studying for the Master of Wine. Judged 2009

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Stephen Skelton MW

Loire, New Zealand

Stephen started his career in wine in 1975. After 12 months at Schloss Schönborn in Germany’s Rheingau winegrowing region and two terms at Geisenheim Wine School, he returned to the UK in 1977 to establish Tenterden Vineyards in Kent where he made wine for 23 vintages. He was winemaker at Lamberhurst Vineyards from 1988-91. Stephen is a consultant to the English wine industry and is involved with planting vineyards for the production of sparkling wine. He became a Master of Wine in 2003. Judged 2009

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Luís Sottomayor

Portugal

Luís’ first studies in enology were at the Bourgone University where he did technical Enological Courses. He then passed a winemaking course at the Charles Stuart University in New South Wales, Australia. He also has a Masters from the Universidade Católica in Porto, his home town. He joined the Sogrape Winemaking department in 1989, as assistant winemaker for the Douro Region. Now he is head-winemaker for Douro table wines and its three Port brands: Offley, Ferreira and Sandeman. Judged 2009

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Walter Speller

Italy

Walter started in wine working as a sommelier and wine buyer for an Italian restaurant in Berlin. Walter passed several WSET qualifications in Berlin. Before settling in London he worked for four months in Bordeaux at Château Haut-Bages-Libéral. In 2003 Walter started at Le Pont de la Tour, first as a Sommelier, then as wine buyer. In his spare time he still finds time to consult several Italian estates on marketing. Judged 2009

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Godfrey Spence

Port & Madeira Judged 2009

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Vicki Stephens-Clarkson

Chile

Vicki joined the wine trade in 2000 and has worked in sales and buying with numerous wine companies including Oddbins, Lay & Wheeler and Direct Wines as well as working in wineries in France, Australia and Argentina. Specialist regions include Chile, Argentina and the Rhone Valley. Judged 2009

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Gerd Stepp

Argentina

Gerd Stepp’s family has been growing grapes in the Pfalz for generations. He has been actively involved in the wine trade for 22 years, working in, Germany, New Zealand, Africa (South Africa, Zimbabwe and Nigeria) and Italy. For the last eight years, Stepp has been a winemaker for Marks and Spencer. Judged 2009

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Matthew Stubbs MW

Languedoc-Roussillon, Regional France Judged 2009

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Karen Sutton

Greece

Karen began her career in the wine trade at an Independent Wine Merchant in South London in 1991. She moved to Oddbins in 1994 where she was PR manager for 9 years. During this time Oddbins was the first retailer to bring an extensive, premium range of Greek wines into the UK giving her a unique opportunity to get to know the wines of Greece and many of its winemakers. In 2003 she set up her own PR business working with a number of different wineries from around the world. Judged 2009

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Charles Symington

Port & Madeira Judged 2009

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Simon Taylor

Rhône

Simon came to wine after 23 years at Sotheby’s as a picture expert and manager. He founded Stone, Vine & Sun in 2006. He loves the Rhone, especially the south, and has drunk the wines happily ever since University days. Judged 2009

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Simon Thorpe MW

South Africa Judged 2009

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Terry Threlfall

Chile

Terry has been involved in the fine dining industry for 15 years and left his native Vancouver 6 years ago to pursue his passion for wine in London. After a stint as head sommelier at Richard Corrigan’s Lindsay House and time as a fine wine consultant, he joined Chez Bruce (Decanter Magazine’s Restaurant of the Year 2006) in 2004 as head sommelier and wine buyer. Terry returns to Vancouver annually as acting sommelier and wine advisor to the Vancouver Playhouse International Wine Festival, one of the world’s largest consumer based wine festivals. Judged 2009

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Steve Thurlow

Canada, South Africa

Steve Thurlow is a Senior Editor at Wine Access magazine, Canada’s national Wine and Food magazine. He co-founded the International Value Wine Awards with Anthony Gismondi and was its director for its first 2 years. Steve is a judge at many international wine competitions and has judged for many years at the Canadian Wine Awards. In 2001, Steve established his wine education business, Wine for Life which teaches consumer, restaurant and corporate groups about wine. Judged 2009

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Philip Tuck MW

Burgundy

I have been in the wine business for 22 years. I started straight out of university in 1986 when I joined Avery’s in Bristol. From here I worked in wineries abroad for a while in various countries – South Africa, New Zealand, Australia, California , Chile and finally Tuscany in Italy. I returned to the UK in 1993 to help set up the new Hatch Mansfield where I am now the Wine Director. I passed the Master of Wine exams in 1999. Judged 2009

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Jason Turner

Austria

Jason, originally from Devon, moved to Vienna to work with wine in 2002 after his degree in languages. He joined Wein & Co, Austria’s leading fine wine retail chain, and climbed the internal vine from sales assistant to marketing manager, and was in charge of organising the customer tastings and wine fairs. Jason continues to hold wine seminars on Austrian wines and also manages the export for a leading producer. Judged 2009

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Alistair Viner

Bordeaux

Alistair joined the trade in 1988 with Geoffrey Roberts working in a team of three to run the Winery and Les Amis du Vin shops. He then travelled extensively for 5 years ending up in South Africa, gaining valuable experience at Villiera Estate before running a new fine wine shop in Cape Town. On returning to the UK he joined Harrods in 1995 (Tea and Coffee dept) and took over as manager of the Wine Dept in 1996. From there he progressed in the role of assistant buyer and took over the buyership in September 2000. Judged 2009

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David Wainwright

Australia

A protégé of Michael Broadbent, David spent 10 years at Christie’s. He now runs his own consultancy traveling the world tasting and advising on fine wines. Regularly hosting tastings and dinners on everything from Felton Road to Petrus, David is in strong demand to convey his knowledge to collectors, restaurants and producers. As well as studying for his Master of Wine he judges, writes and is a regular member of Decanter’s tasting panels. He is the Senior International Advisor for Zachys. Judged 2009

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Lilyane Weston

Regional France

Lilyane Weston is a Wine Writer with 40 years’ experience in the wine trade. She has received the Wine Trade Club Educational Trophy and is a Member of the Circle of Wine Writers and the International Federation of Wine Writers. She is Regular contributor to several magazines and also participates regularly in most of the OIV (Organisation Internationale de la Vigne et du Vin) international wine competitions. For the last 18 years I have been the proprietor of a wholesale wine business in Hertfordshire. Judged 2009

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Tim Wildman

Regional France, Italy

Tim has over 16 years’ experience in the wine trade, starting with a ten-year stint with Oddbins. After that, he spent five years with Cachet Wine before joining Les Caves de Pyrene in Guildford. Judged 2009

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Nigel Wilkinson

Loire Judged 2009

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Mark Williamson

Rhône Judged 2009

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