Dr James Flewellen is a biophysicist, award-winning wine writer and educator based in London, UK. James learned his trade in taste during his doctoral studies through the University of Oxford Blind Wine Tasting Society, of which he was the President from 2010-2012. During his term, he represented Oxford University at many international blind tasting competitions – twice winning the prestigious ‘Top Taster’ Award in the annual Varsity blind tasting match against Cambridge University and captaining winning teams in competitions throughout Europe. Reporting on the 58th Varsity Match in the Financial Times, Jancis Robinson MW described him as "...the most impressive taster of the lot...". James's 'day job' sees him investigating the biomechanics of HIV and the immune system at the Francis Crick Institute.
Writing, Education & Courses
James has set out to clarify the complex and hard-to-navigate world of wine for both novice and experienced tasters. He applies his scientific training to wine education, illuminating concepts of taste, tannin and terroir in an approachable, entertaining manner. James co-authored the original Concise Guide to Wine and Blind Tasting, which won the Gourmand Award for Best Drinks Education Book in the UK, and placed second in the world. His wine writing has also been recognised with the Wine Travel Award by the Millésima Blog Awards in 2019. James runs wine education events in London, Oxford and further afield – including the Taste Unlocked masterclass weekend in Chartres, France – and offers food and wine consultancy. Recent projects include designing wine pairings for the ChopChop home dining app. James holds the WSET Diploma in Wine and Spirits and is a judge for the International Wine Challenge.