The Fabulous Ladies of the Wine Society


In this article dedicated to the most fabulous women in the wine world we would like to represent unique wine experiences and the special role in the wine business of those ladies who are part of the Wine Travel Awards community. We’re telling the story about women in wine and alcohol business at this International Women’s Day 2022 and the spotlight is on our talented female winemakers and producers.

Let’s raise a glass to these impressive women around the wine world we would love you to introduce.

Fiona Morrison, WTA jury member, Managing Director of Thienpont Wine. Fiona Morrison is an international wine merchant and négociant and with her husband, Jacques Thienpont, runs their three Bordeaux estates, Le Pin in Pomerol, L’IF in Saint Emilion and L’Hêtre in Castillon. All parts of the Thienpont Wine business are part of the whole wine experience. The wine negociant business started in 1842, long before the family owned vineyards in Bordeaux.  When grandfather Georges Thienpont bought his first estates, he was also well respected as a wine negociant.

“The two sides of the business work naturally together”, comments Fiona Morrison on some of the business concepts, “it is clear that if we take such care growing and making our wines, we are going to take the same care about how the wines are distributed and sold around the world.  It is part of a holistic whole – just as it is in Burgundy with the top domains. We cannot separate the parts and assign a number to them”. Talking about the most interesting and important projects Fiona Morrison admits that she is a very sociable person and I love meeting people.  The experience at the beginning of her career in communication and marketing wine has shown that explaining wine, sharing one’s enthusiasm and knowledge and sharing tasting experiences is all part of the wine business.  “We shouldn’t forget that wine is a complicated subject and if we can make it easier to understand then it’s more enjoyable for our clients. I was so pleased to gain the Master of Wine qualification; not only did it teach me so much about wine but it also taught me how to communicate about wine.”

Einat Klein, WTA jury member, a journalist, photographer, historian, professional traveller, guide to the Middle East and Africa, wine expert and wine producer (Israel). She studied the Middle East at Bar-Ilan University. Founder of Travel Lab Ethiopia. Owner and founder of Vino & Co, a company that organizes regular educational tastings. Einat is also a founder of Einat Winery. In 2021, at the Museum of the Jewish People (ANU), located on the campus of Tel Aviv University, a presentation-tasting of the red dry blend 3 Cats from Einat Winery took place. The wine is made from three grape varieties: Cabernet Sauvignon, Cabernet Franc and Petit Verdot. Vineyards are located at an altitude of 850 meters in the Samaria mountains and are considered among the best in Israel. Wine aging: 12 months in French oak barrels. The exclusive design of the label belongs to the famous musician Andrei Makarevich, Einat Klein’s husband.

The year 2022 will see a new wine from Einat Klein. She comments: “I want to convey to people that Israel is not just archeology and religion, it is also very decent wines.”

Patricia Wilcox, she is at heart an entrepreneur, owner and founder of Awestruck Ciders in New York which is a nominee at the Brand – the Visiting Card of the Country category. In her stories about cider making activities, she notes that “is fanatical about crafting transcendent, awe-inspiring hard cider. We believe in good work, good times and good cider.  Our name is our mission, we aim to leave you AWESTRUCK.” Patricia is currently on an academic sabbatical, pursuing an International Master in Wine Tourism Innovation through Universitat Rovira i Virgili, Université de Bordeaux, and Universidade do Porto.  She is WSET Level 3 Wines Certified with distinction. is a writer based between New York, Bordeaux, and Porto.

Florence Cathiard, сo-owner of the Château Smith Haut Lafitte vineyard is also president of the Conseil Supérieur de l’Oenotourisme (the wine tourism board).  Château Smith Haut Lafitte is currently nominated for the Wine Travel Awards in the Must Visit, Progressive Approach, Objet d’Art categories. Telling about the Château & wines Florence Cathiard said: “Château Smith Lafitte is 650 years old and we are very proud of it. We learn from our failures and therefore we get better, yet we want to pursue a typical terroir wine. Making a fancy wine outside the lines is probably a good bet for a small château/vineyard, but definitely not a good strategy for one of the top Classified Growth of Bordeaux like SHL.” Florence is a super busy and active person fully involved in all aspects of the business. Moreover, she is also examining the vineyard with chief-viticulturist, lunching in 18th century chartreuse with wine merchants and importers, communicating with clients all over the world and, in normal times, holding receptions in beautiful château at night.

We remind you that from March 1, all those who keep a finger on the pulse of the wine world are invited to vote for members of the wonderful community Wine Travel Awards.

Author: Olga Pinevich-Todoriuk