Veteran wine writers join for the launch of

Image: Angus Hughson

Experience and trust are the cornerstones for the launch of Winepilot with respected wine scribes Jeni Port, Tony Love, Ken Gargett, Rob Geddes MW, Matt Dunne and Erin Larkin some of the wine communicators now contributing to this new online drinks magazine.

Winepilot was founded by Angus Hughson, former chief marketing officer of The Wine Collective and regular long-time contributor to The Australian and Gourmet Traveller Wine, to entertain and guide consumers of predominantly wine, but also craft beer and spirits.

“We are excited to launch Winepilot using such a range of contributors with great depth of knowledge which we are now delivering to a wide range of wine drinkers through a consumer-friendly online platform,” Hughson said.

Traditionally newspaper columns were vital for connecting wineries to a large audience and telling their stories.

However, as many of these columns have disappeared, there are fewer opportunities for wineries to be showcased to a broad spectrum of wine consumers.

As a free digital drinks guide for consumers, Winepilot offers wineries much-needed exposure using modern digital tools and social media to create and distribute engaging drinks content, with a combination of stories and reviews.

“We want to be the Broadsheet for drinks – a digital magazine that gently guides consumers to a world of better wine, craft beer and spirits, while avoiding trade jargon to resonate with a broad audience by using everyday language,” explained Hughson.

“We feature the best wines and create content of interest to the wider drinking community without a sole focus on super premium wines that are only relevant to a small proportion of the general public.

“We’ll feature wines from ALDI alongside Penfolds Grange to provide recommendations for all tastes and budgets.”

Hughson says a particular focus for Winepilot is those less engaged wine consumers.

“With our free, user-friendly platform, we are helping wineries to connect with consumers that have an interest in wine but are unlikely to buy a magazine or purchase an online subscription,” he said.

“Having some of the country’s most respected wine writers allows us to provide our readers with engaging and informed reviews and articles to help them navigate, explore and discover the best available wines.

“Our industry is excellent at communicating with that veneer of high interest, largely older male drinkers but we are not so good for the mainstream, who actually buy most of the wine in Australia, plus younger consumers, who are vital for our industry’s future.

“25% of the Winepilot audience is under 35 illustrating that our content is resonating with younger, wine interested consumers.”

Winepilot has a number of highly experienced contributors to which it will add communicators from all parts of the trade, including winemakers and sommeliers, to regularly unearth new voices and provide a broad spread of content with wide appeal.

While Winepilot’s focus is on drinks in Australia’s local market, the business plans to roll out into international markets to make wine more accessible to a wide range of consumers and assist local brands to connect with consumers in key export markets.

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