I’m an award-winning journalist and communicator specialising in wine, spirits and the psychology of smell, originally from Yorkshire and now based in London.
Currently Wine Editor for the Daily Telegraph where I write on wine and other alcohol-related subjects across the news, comment, features and lifestyle pages; a weekly drink columnist for TMG’s digital channel, Luxury; and a recipe-writer and wine-and-food-matcher for Olive magazine where my articles appear every month.
I’m an occasional talking head on Radio 4’s You & Yours; was thrilled to be invited to make cocktails for and pull crackers with Evan Davis and Gyles Brandreth on the Christmas Day Woman’s Hour special and recently sat on the red BBC Breakfast sofa, glass of chardonnay in hand, chatting about why this grape has returned to stylish tables (and why it never left some). I’m also a judge for this year’s BBC Food & Farming awards and have been enjoying criss-crossing the country with the lovely @petebrownbeer to record at breweries and wineries from Aberdeen to Derbyshire to Kent.
I also write more widely, as an interviewer (interviewees include Cliff Richard and former Home Secretary Alan Johnson), feature writer and book reviewer. I’ve written regularly for the Guardian, the Daily Mail, Psychologies and Square Meal magazine and pieces have appeared on a more ad hoc basis in Red Magazine, the Evening Standard, as well as on the Telegraph’s digital Men’s channel and several other digital and print publications.
Now shortlisted for the 2014 Louis Roederer online communicator of the year for work on this website, I’ve also been awarded Fortnum & Mason Drink Writer of the year (2013); Louis Roederer International Wine Columnist of the Year (2011) and Class Magazine Drink Writer of the Year (2009).
Judging by his column in the Observer (see here and here), Nigel Slater is a fan of my best-selling book How to Drink. It’s a seasonal guide to all manner of drinks from breakfast smoothies to G&T that Tatler said, “No kitchen should be without,” and thanks to brilliant Sarah Carr at here design it’s also so beautiful that it won a V&A Design Award. My second book, How to Drink at Christmas is – well the title says it all. Think clementine cocktails, egg nogg and what wine to drink with turkey, goose and mince pies.
I don’t just write, tweet, talk on the radio and blog here at Planet Victoria either – I also give classes in collaboration with The Culinary Anthropologist.
And I’m in the second year of a Masters in Psychology at Birkbeck University where I intend to specialise in the nature of addiction, appetite and the neuroscience of flavour perception.
I also have a degree in English Literature from Cambridge University, speak Italian (and drink a lot of Italian wine) and am a frustrated marathon runner (I’ve got two under my belt – Rome and Tel Aviv – but just trying to kick a six-month injury…) and love ballet.
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