It’s NOT Over! The Tasting Panel Revives Somm Journal

Tasting Panel Revives Somm Journal

In late October, the publication Sommelier Journal announced it would suspend publication. This was sad news for many, including myself, as I enjoy reading the articles, and I take pleasure in writing for them.  I had hoped to propose my next story on Spanish food and wine when the announcement broke that they would cease publication until further notice.

Six weeks later I receive an announcement that TPM Custom Publishing, Meridith May will acquire Sommelier Journal with the intent to rebrand the magazine as SOMM Journal. The new editorial board will comprise of internationally-renowned wine writers, sommeliers and authorities, including Anthony Dias Blue as Editor-in-Chief, David Gadd as Managing Editor, and a team of top wine and hospitality industry writers.

Having worked with Anthony as a judge at the San Francisco International Wine Competition where he is the executive director and founder, I know he is the right person to guide SOMM Journal in the right direction.  It might sound silly, but I judge many wine competitions ONCE.  Rarely do I return a second time. Why? If the event is not well organized and managed, I have no interest to be part of it. I don’t like disorganized events, and I certainly don’t want to award medals to mediocre wines.  Who wants to be pressured to give ‘gold’ to any old wine, especially if it lacks that special character that screams gold? Anthony’s wine comp is the ONLY judging event I beg to come back to. Not only is it a well-run program, it is a joy to be a part of his events. It is also well-managed, and he is a great guy to boot with a wealth of knowledge in wine and spirits, which makes him a perfect fit for SOMM Journal.


So…What’s next?

SOMM Journal will broaden coverage to include artisan spirits, coffee, tea and food trends.  And with Anthony Dias Blue and David Gadd at the helm, this magazine has great potential at succeeding.  And if you think magazines are dead, think again. May publishes the TASTING PANEL magazine, which reaches an audience of more than 100,000 readers a month. And guess what? Mr. Blue is leading the helm as the Editor-in-Chief at the Tasting Panel as well.

So things are looking up for SOMM Journal.

I wish them huge success moving forward and look forward to seeing the evolution of what this magazine will become in the coming months and years.


About the Author:

Editor and co-founder of, Pamela is a sommelier and former restaurant manager and wine buyer with Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), Court of Master Sommeliers & Center for Wine Origins certification. She has contributed to or been quoted by various publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Sommelier Journal, Vegetarian Times, VIV Magazine, UC-Berkeley Astrobiology News, The Washington Post, the Associated Press, NPR and USA Today. True to her roots, she seeks varietal and appellation integrity and is always passionate about finding the next great bottle of wine.


  1. Sammie December 4, 2013 at 9:27 PM - Reply

    I am really excited about this news. It is wonderful to hear that this new publisher will take the magazine to new heights.

  2. Heather December 5, 2013 at 8:22 PM - Reply

    I cant wait to see the first issue of SOMM!

  3. Marlene Rossman December 6, 2013 at 3:47 PM - Reply

    As someone who has written piece for the Sommelier Journal, I was terribly disappointed to see its demise. I have also written for Tasting Panel and it is a very different “media experience.”
    We shall see…

  4. Marlene Rossman December 6, 2013 at 3:50 PM - Reply

    Also, David Vogels, who was the editor of Sommelier Journal has been retained as Consulting Editor.

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