Neal Martin leaves The Wine Advocate for VinousBy Lucy Shaw
Wine writer Neal Martin has left Robert Parker’s The Wine Advocate to work for Antonio Galloni at Vinous, where he has been made a senior editor.
Having worked for Parker since 2006, news of Martin’s departure was posted on Galloni’s Vinous website today. “Life should be about exploring possibilities. The prospect of joining Vinous raised so many that it was impossible to resist being a part of a truly world-class team,” Martin said.
“I look forward to bringing my 20 years as a wine professional to Vinous and helping to shape its future as its next chapter opens. Palate and pen are primed and ready for action,” he added.
Martin will cover Bordeaux, Burgundy, South Africa and New Zealand for the online publication.
With Galloni already covering Bordeaux for Vinous, Martin will write separate, independent reports on the wines of the region, including en primeur, new releases from bottle, top value picks, and verticals and vintage retrospectives. Similarly, he and Steve Tanzer will both cover Burgundy.
“I have admired Neal’s passion, dedication, work ethic, talent and knowledge since I first met him in 2006, when we both worked alongside Robert Parker,” Galloni said.
“Neal brings to Vinous a unique combination of experience and wit that I am sure our readers will greatly enjoy. I’m thrilled to be working alongside Neal once again,” he added.
Martin’s role at Vinous will begin next February. He joins wine writers Stephen Tanzer, Josh Raynolds, Ian D’Agata and David Schildknecht in the Vinous fold.
According to Galloni, Vinous “breaks free from the constraints of traditional print media” with “a daily stream of articles” by “the most trusted voices in wine writing”.
This isn’t the first high profile departure from The Wine Advocate of late. In May American wine writer Jeb Dunnuck left the publication to set up his own website, JebDunnuck.com.
Dunnuck joined The Wine Advocate in 2013 soon after Galloni’s departure. In March 2013 former lawyer Parker launched a lawsuit against Galloni for withholding tasting notes and for alleged fraud and defamation but dropped the case a month later.
“We’re pleased to announce that The Wine Advocate and All Grapes Media have resolved all of our outstanding issues amicably and The Wine Advocate has withdrawn its lawsuit against Mr. Galloni and All Grapes Media,” Parker wrote on TWA’s bulletin board at the time.
The lawsuit focused on Sonoma reviews from Galloni that weren’t published as planned in TWA’s 28 February 2013 issue.
Galloni left his $US300,000 a year position at The Wine Advocate in February 2013 to launch Vinous.
Parker sold a major stake in The Wine Advocate in December 2012 for US$15m to a group of Singaporean investors and at the same time stepped down as editor-in-chief.
Martin began his wine career over twenty years ago with a Japanese import company specialising in Bordeaux and Burgundy.
In 2003 he started his own website, Wine Journal, which rapidly gained a global audience and a reputation for its independence and irreverent style.
Its popularity prompted Robert Parker to ask him to join The Wine Advocate in 2006, and he eventually took over responsibility for coverage of Bordeaux and Burgundy from Parker.
Founded in 2013 by Antonio Galloni, Vinous has readers in over 90 countries and provides reviews of new releases, hosts vertical tastings and creates video content on location from the world’s most celebrated wine regions.
Vinous expanded its digital platform through the acquisition of the Delectable wine app in 2016.
You can read about Essex-born Martin’s love of KFC and 1945 Claret, dislike of corked wine writers and fear of architecture in our Proust Q&A interview with him.