DWCC 2014 Announces Content Details and Jancis Robinson MW as Keynote Speaker

2014 DWCC logo

Internationally-renowned wine expert Jancis Robinson MW will be a keynote speaker at the 7th annual Digital Wine Communications Conference (Montreux – Switzerland, October 31–November 2, 2014).

The organisers of the only international conference dedicated to the convergence of wine and the web are pleased to announce that this year’s DWCC will include Jancis Robinson MW amongst its keynote speakers.

As well as addressing conference delegates on the subject of Wine in Context (this year’s conference theme), Robinson will be leading a tutored Grand Tasting of Swiss wines with Wine Grapes co-author Dr. José Vouillamoz, with a focus on four grape varieties: Chasselas, Petite Arvine, Merlot and Pinot Noir.

This unique opportunity will be followed by a walk-around tasting with 40 of the best Swiss producers, many of them being in the Gault & Millau Top 100 Swiss Wines 2014 ranking, presenting their wines to the 300+ conference delegates, and two masterclasses highlighting ancient varieties and iconic Swiss wines, led respectively by Dr. José Vouillamoz and Paolo Basso, Best Sommelier of the World 2013.

Other confirmed speakers at this year’s DWCC include:

  • Swiss wine grower and biochar expert Hans-Peter Schmidt
  • Hamish Nicklin, Director, Agency Sales UK, Google
  • Richard Siddle, editor of UK title Harpers Wine & Spirits Trade Review
  • Social media guru Christian “Documentally” Payne
  • SEO expert and blogger Judith Lewis
  • Felicity Carter, editor of Meininger’s Wine Business International
  • Wine writer and commentator Robert Joseph
  • Nomacorc research scientist Maurizio Ugliano


The DWCC celebrates its 7th anniversary in 2014; it will be held in Montreux, a town of some 25,500 inhabitants situated on Lake Geneva. Famous for its jazz festival (held every year in July since 1967), Montreux is in the French-speaking Vaud canton and within easy travelling distance of many European locations (previous conferences have been run in Spain, Portugal, Austria, Italy and Turkey). The three-day conference will be held in the 2m2c Montreux Music and Convention Centre.

Comments DWCC co-founder Gabriella Opaz: “Switzerland is a multitude of regions, grapes and wines, and we’re thrilled to be heading there to discuss and debate excellence in online wine communications. Sandwiched between France, Italy, Germany and Austria, Switzerland has 26 cantons, 4 linguistic areas, a plethora of cultural influences, 6 wine-producing areas and some 40 indigenous grapes: it’s a real melting pot.”

Theme and content

The theme of this year’s conference is Wine in Context, and the DWCC will be partnering with Wine In Moderation to organise a panel debate on the subject of wine culture in context; delegates will be encouraged to reflect upon the potential of digital media to create entirely new ways to talk about and sell wine.

As in previous years, DWCC 2014 will feature a range of communications and technical workshops on the skills and information needed by wine communicators in the 21st century. These sessions are led by international experts in the field who come from around the world to share their knowledge with delegates, and thus, the conference is an excellent opportunity for anyone in the wine trade to network and learn alongside peers and leading figures.

Conference delegates will attend a wide range of educational wine tastings as well as experiencing Swiss wine and food culture and hospitality in events, tastings, winery visits and tourism opportunities within Switzerland’s six wine-producing regions, with an emphasis on native Swiss grape varieties.

Pre-conference activities

A special pre-conference event on Thursday October 30th will showcase two luxury wine regions via master class tastings of Tokaj & Amarone wines, with other tastings possibly being added. These limited-number events will provide the opportunity to taste aged and unique wines with commentary by experts in each field, giving attendees a fresh perspective on these wine regions.

Pre-conference “by invitation only” discovery trips will take small groups of delegates to visit wine-producing areas outside of Switzerland for which they will be ambassadors during the DWCC; French AOP Châteauneuf-du-Pape will be hosting one of these exceptional opportunities.

Further details regarding the conference will be released shortly.

Sign up

Delegates can benefit from special rate bookings with conference partners, detailed on the DWCC website. The reduced-rate delegate fee for bloggers and alumni is €250; the full-rate fee is €450.

Conference sponsors

The 2014 DWCC is sponsored by Swiss Wine Promotion, the body responsible for championing Switzerland’s national wine production. It is organised by Ryan and Gabriella Opaz and Robert McIntosh of social media company Vrazon.



Louise Hurren – [email protected]

+33 (0)6 17 66 02 53 (mobile)


About the Digital Wine Communications Conference

The sixth annual DWCC (formerly known as the EWBC) was held in Logroño (Spain) from October 25-27, 2013 and was attended by 300 wine communicators and wine industry professionals from 40 countries.

  • EWBC 2008: Rioja (Spain), 40 delegates
  • EWBC 2009: Lisbon (Portugal), 120 delegates
  • EWBC 2010: Vienna (Austria), 200 delegates
  • EWBC 2011: Brescia (Italy), 216 delegates
  • EWBC 2012: Izmir (Turkey), 280 delegates
  • DWCC 2013: Logroño (Spain), 300 delegates

*Catavino.net is an Iberian food, culture and travel website created in 2005 by DWCC co-founders Ryan and Gabriella Opaz.