Wine and drinks writing is a highly coveted career choice, yet one of the most challenging to break into. It is also a particularly challenging one for both newcomers and seasoned professionals alike to maintain as a financially sustainable full-time profession.
In this session, wine and drinks journalist Jacopo Mazzeo will highlight the skill sets required to kick start a writing career while explaining how to develop it into a financially viable business. Jacopo will be exploring the different professional paths and certifications that can open doors to wine and drinks writing; discussing the actual writing process (from developing a feature idea to researching, pitching, and filing); touching on people, time, and travel management; and describing the changing landscape of the wine and drinks writing profession.
Jacopo Mazzeo is an award-winning wine and drinks journalist, photographer, and consultant based in the UK. He regularly contributes to leading drinks publications including Wine Enthusiast, Whisky Magazine, Decanter, SevenFifty Daily, and Good Beer Hunting.
He consults market research firms and private clients on consumer trends; gives drinks masterclasses and tutors tastings; and judges international wine, beer, and spirits competitions including the Concours Mondial de Bruxelles, the International Beer Challenge, and the World Whiskies Awards.
Before he embraced full-time journalism, he worked as a sommelier, studied musicology at the University of Bologna (Italy), and took a PhD at the University of Southampton (UK).
Jacopo was recently awarded the title of Best Beer & Food Writer 2022 by the North American Guild of Beer Writers, while his 2021 wine book Come Riconoscere i Vini (published in Italian), won the prestigious Bancarella della Cucina Selezione prize.
WSG Membership Manager Mary Kirk welcomes Andrew Jefford, WSG’s Academic Advisor and one of the world’s finest wine writers to discuss the release of his new book “Drinking with the Valkyries”.
Andrew also leads the WSG Confidential events, hosting and interviewing personalities in the wine world, but this time the tables are turned and you will have an opportunity to learn a bit more about Andrew: his story, his thoughts and his writings.
Don’t miss this rare opportunity to listen and ask questions to Andrew, a very thoughtful and distinguished wine writer who is also part of the WSG family!
As a member of the Wine Scholar Guild, enjoy an exclusive discount on Andrew's book here.
Wine writing has changed over time moving away from personal accounts and story-telling to production statistics and technical descriptions of techniques and practices.
Join Steven Spurrier, consultant editor for Decanter and mastermind behind the Judgement of Paris, as he speaks to wine writing, both past and present, and unveils his new “Académie du Vin Library” initiative—a publishing entity that updates and revives the out-of-print classics as well as new and specially commissioned titles by some of the finest contemporary wine writers for your reading pleasure!
The books will not be available on Amazon or in bookstores…you’ll want to tune in and get the inside scoop!
In 1971 Steven Spurrier did the unthinkable. He used his inheritance to establish himself as a wine merchant in Paris – in the heart of the country that, at the time, reigned supreme over the winemaking world.
Two years later, Steven thought it might be fun to marshal his already extensive network of contacts to offer lessons in wine appreciation for his fellow Parisians. He founded the L’Académie du Vin, offering a series of informal courses that combined wonderful wines and expert tuition in an agreeable atmosphere, taking the subject matter seriously without ever descending into dullness.
In 1976, Steven sent more tremors through the wine world when he organized the ‘Judgement of Paris’ – a blind tasting that pitched the finest French vintages against a selection of ‘upstarts’ from California. To everyone’s surprise (and some people’s horror), the upstarts won – underlining that with sufficient skill and passion, along with the blessing of suitable terroir, great wine could be produced across the world.
Since then, in part thanks to Steven’s youthful enthusiasm, wine appreciation courses have become an essential part of the global wine landscape. In addition to the hundreds of thousands of students around the world who have taken a formal programme through the WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) since it was founded in 1969, there are a multitude of opportunities to learn about wine through more informal wine tastings, wine classes and wine societies.
Now, a little older and a good deal wiser, Steven has turned his attention to the writing that inspired him to enter the wine trade in the first place.
Good wine writing, like wine itself, is a product of talent, passion, extensive knowledge and instinctive good taste, but it is also about pleasure. Wine writing at its best must inform and educate, yes, but equally it should elevate the senses and stir the spirit – inviting the reader to embark upon a journey that is both endless and endlessly fascinating.
It is to that end that Steven has recently founded the Académie du Vin Library, a new publishing house specialising in the very best wine writing past, present and future for wine lovers worldwide. Académie du Vin Library enjoys the support of some of the best-known names in the business including Hugh Johnson OBE, Jancis Robinson OBE MW, Sarah Kemp, Justin Howard-Sneyd MW, Ian Harris MBE and Jane Anson.
Ready for your next challenge? There's still time to join the upcoming sessions!
+ 300 on-demand replays on WSG Studio