Steven Spurrier joined the wine trade in 1964 as a trainee with Christopher and Co, London’s oldest wine merchant. In 1970 he moved to Paris where he opened Les Caves de la Madeleine, which rapidly achieved recognition as one of the most highly regarded specialist wine shops in Paris. In 1973 he opened L’Academie du Vin, France’s first private wine school, and went on to stage the famous Paris Tasting of 1976, when a Chardonnay and Cabernet Sauvignon from California scored more highly than some of the most prestigious wines of Burgundy and Bordeaux.
In 1988 Spurrier returned to the UK where he became a wine consultant and journalist. Today his roles include a director of The Christie’s Wine Course, which he founded with Christie’s Education in 1982, wine consultant to Singapore Airlines and consultant editor to Decanter, to which he contributes monthly. He has received several international awards for wine writing including the Bunch Prize and Le Prix de Champagne Lanson, both for his articles in Decanter. He is the author of several books on wine, and his latest, The Clarke-Spurrier Guide to Fine Wine (Websters International Publishers, 1998), was updated and reissued in 2001. That same year Spurrier was awarded Le Grand Prix de l’Academie Internationale du Vin (only the third time the award has been made since its creation in 1982) and The Maestro Award in honor of Andre Tchelistcheff. In 1988 he was made Le Personalite de l’Annee (Oenology) for his services to French wine. He has also received the Ritz Carlton Millennia Singapore Lifetime Achievement Award and the Prix Louis Marinier. He is a regular judge on the international wine tasting circuit and currently holds the position of chairman of the Japan Wine Challenge.