Sunday Spotlight

Shedding some light on your favorite wine writers.

Tom Hyland

Tom Hyland is a freelance wine writer and photographer specializing in the wines of Italy. He lives in Chicago and recently completed his 77th trip to Italy. He has visited virtually every region in the country and is  constantly amazed at the wonderful variety of wines produced from indigenous grapes (he is never amazed at the quality of the wines!).  Tom Hyland has been in the wine business for 40 years, writing for 20 years, and been a professional photographer for the past 12 years. He currently contributes to publications such as Decanter and wine-searcher.com. He is a freelance photographer for Cephas Picture Library in England and has had my photos published in several publications, including Wine Spectator.

1. What was your first job as a writer?

My first job as a writer was with The Wine News, back in 1990.

2. What led you to becoming a wine writer?

I had worked for 15 years in the wine business, both in retail and wholesale. I enjoyed that, but after that much time, I felt I needed to go in a different direction. I wanted to share my knowledge and educate people about wine, and I knew I could reach a larger audience that way. It was also much more personally satisfying, as I am a creative person.

3. What kind of reader do you have in mind when you’re writing?

Depending on the magazine, it’s either an educated consumer or a member of the trade. It all depends on exactly what the article is about, so sometimes both groups. 

4. Where is the most magical place your wine writing has brought you?

I’m not sure I can name one, but being able to have a private tasting at Dom Perignon certainly ranks up there. 

Read Tom’s article on Wine-searcher: 

 

5. What was one of your favorite articles to write, and why?

It’s difficult to select one, but a recent article about classic Barolo was particularly rewarding to write, not only because I love Barolo, but also because I believe that these wines that do not get the headlines of single-vineyard Barolos are excellent and represent the heart and soul, as well as the heritage of Barolo and its producers. We shouldn’t forget these wines.

Tom Hyland

Freelance Wine Writer, Reviewer, and Photographer

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6. What is the best advice someone has given you on your writing?

I haven’t received that much advice, but the one thing I remember is to get it right, meaning make sure your article is 100% accurate.

7. What would you be doing if you weren’t writing about wine?

Probably drinking a lot of it! (At my age, I don’t drink as much as I used to). Seriously, I’d spend more time on my photography, which has become my passion. In fact, in 2020 I was awarded first place (category: Places) as the Errazuriz Wine Photographer of the Year.

Nominate someone for Sunday Spotlight:

Doug Frost MW MS

Doug Frost

Doug Frost is a Master of Wine and Master Sommelier as well as an author and wine consultant based in Kansas City, Missouri. In 1991, he passed the rigorous Master

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Wine expert and sommelier Bernie Sun

Bernie Sun

Bernard Sun — known to friends as “Bernie” — is one of the country’s most respected sommeliers, and with good reason. His wine knowledge and palate are the result of

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