17 MARCH 2021 | LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM – Liquid Icons – the fine wine research and content production company founded by the late, great Gerard Basset OBE MW MS and his friend Lewis Chester DipWSET – are delighted to announce Taylor’s Port as a sponsor of The Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships which will now be renamed The Taylor’s Port Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships.
The not-for-profit Golden Vines Awards will recognise excellence in the fine wine industry and raise funds for The Gerard Basset Wine Education Charitable Foundation with the aim of funding diversity and inclusion-related wine education programmes, including the headline Golden Vines Diversity Scholarship, Internship & Mentorship Programmes.
Lewis Chester DipWSET, the Chief Executive Officer of Liquid Icons and Trustee of The Gerard Basset Wine Education Charitable Foundation commented: “As someone of Portuguese heritage, I cannot think of a better sponsor for The Golden Vines Diversity Scholarship than Taylor’s Port. Together, we can accomplish great things in creating opportunities for the BAME/BIPOC community in the wonderful world of wine, and The Taylor’s Port Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships will inevitably help in creating the future BAME/BIPOC role models that anyone wishing to enter the wine industry from those communities can look to with a mixture of pride and inspiration.”
Adrian Bridge, Managing Director of Taylor’s Port, added: “We are delighted to be associated with Liquid Icons and The Gerard Basset Wine Education Charitable Foundation to support the creation of a more effective workforce in the wine trade by seeking diversity in teams. For Taylor’s, increasing diversity and inclusiveness is of the upmost importance.”
The Golden Vines Diversity Scholarship, Internship & Mentorship Programme will include two scholarships for aspiring black and ethnic minority students wishing to undertake the Masters of Wine (MW) and Master Sommelier (MS) programmes – open to all candidates from all over the world. These scholarships, worth up to £55,000 for each scholar, will cover the entirety of their course and examination costs, as well as loss of earnings during their work placement internships. The Internship programme includes a set of diversified work experiences with some of the world’s top wine domaines including, but not limited to Château Cheval Blanc, Château d’Yquem, Château Smith Haut Lafitte, Colgin Cellars, Dom Pérignon, Domaine Baron Thenard, Domaine des Lambrays, Domaine Laroche, Heitz Wine Cellars, Liber Pater, Opus One, Ruinart, and Weingut Egon Müller, among others, as well as academic courses at UC Davis Department of Enology & Viticulture, the WOW Wine School (Porto), the Kedge Wine School, and the OIV.
The judging panel for The Taylor’s Port Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships is comprised of Nina Basset FIH, Rajat Parr (Sandhi Wines), Carlton McCoy MS (Heitz Cellar), Clement Robert MS (The Birley Clubs / Annabel’s) and Jancis Robinson OBE MW. The judges will also provide ongoing mentorship to The Golden Vines Diversity Scholars during their academic journey.
The application window for The Taylor’s Port Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships closes on 16th April 2021, and all interested applicants should apply online at liquidicons.com. The application process has been devised in association with the Institute of Masters of Wine and the Court of Master Sommeliers (European Chapter).
The winners of The Taylor’s Port Golden Vines Diversity Scholarships will be announced at The Golden Vines Awards Ceremony, Dinner & After-Party to be held at Annabel’s Private Members Club on 7th October 2021. At the ceremony, The Golden Vines Awards will be awarded to the world’s best fine wine producers as voted by leading members of the global fine wine industry in the Gerard Basset Global Fine Wine Report produced by Liquid Icons, with polling having opened on 8th March 2021. Every Award Winner will be given The Golden Vines Trophy, designed and produced in collaboration with Amorim Cork of Portugal.
About Liquid Icons:
Liquid Icons is a fine wine research and content production company founded by two friends to “do stuff in wine” – the late, great Gerard Basset OBE MW MS and Lewis Chester DipWSET. We create first-class original content and research about the world’s greatest fine wines and spirits. Our work encompasses motion picture, industry research, recognition and celebration of wine and spirits excellence, charitable and fundraising activities, as well as educational initiatives.
About The Gerard Basset Wine Education Charitable Foundation:
Set up to honour the legacy and memory of Gerard Basset OBE MW MS by addressing the wine industry’s most pressing issues through education, training & mentorship, the Gerard Basset Wine Education Charitable Foundation comprises a multidisciplinary team of industry-leading professionals as its Trustees: Nina Basset FIH, Romané Basset, Lewis Chester DipWSET, Ian Harris MBE DipWSET, and Jancis Robinson OBE MW.
Annabel’s is an all day and all-night Private Members’ Club. In Mayfair London. At its core, the club is a place to entertain and be entertained. With a timeless combination of comfort, glamour and intimacy, the Club continually strives to create an atmosphere that is as unforgettable and celebratory as ever, for a diverse, eclectic and cosmopolitan membership. The historic private members club has earned a global reputation founded on superb service, exclusive ambience, first class cuisine and unparalleled entertainment. In 2018 Annabel’s opened the doors to its much-anticipated new home, a Grade I listed Georgian mansion house at 46 Berkeley Square. Set across 26,000 square feet and positioned just two doors down from where it all began in 1963. The Club has five restaurants for its members and their guests to enjoy, including a garden restaurant with retracting glass roof and ‘The Mexican’ a restaurant serving innovative Mexican cuisine. In 2019, the club added new Italian restaurant, Matteo’s. Complete with decadent interiors – a striking homage to the original Annabel’s – the restaurant is home to the world’s biggest selection of Sassicaia, Monfortino and Dom Pérignon.
About Taylor’s Port:
Taylor’s is one of the first historic Port wine lodges, having been established in 1692. A family company since its foundation, it has been dedicated exclusively to the production of high-quality Port wines, from the planting of the vine and harvesting the grapes for fermentation, ageing and bottling of the various styles of Port wine. The family’s commitment to the future of Port wine is also demonstrated in its determination to preserve and, where appropriate, improve the unique environmental, social and economic aspects of the Douro region through the promotion of sustainable viticulture.
Taylor’s is mainly recognised as a benchmark for Vintage Port, its classic Vintages attracting the highest scores and auction prices. The house was the creator of the modern LBV (Late Bottled Vintage), a style pioneered by the Taylor’s and it is the most sought-after brand of LBV. Taylor’s also pioneered the first Dry White Port with the launch of Chip Dry and was the first to commercialize of the Single Quinta Vintages. The House is also recognized as the most important producer of Aged Tawnies and has one of the most extensive reserves of cask aged Port wines.