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Japan Wine Challenge
Fuji Cider Challenge
Japan Spirits Competition

John Salvi MW

John is the president of the Wine and Spirit Association of Great Britain. He has been in the Wine Trade for 45 years, and is the representative for Great Britain at the International Union of Oenologists. He is an active professional taster, wine consultant, and wine writer.

Katsuyuki Tanaka

Tanaka-san has been for many years acknowledged as Japan's leading wine writer and wine taster. Wine has been his lifelong interest. Tanaka-san and his palate are respected by his peers internationally.

Andrew Caillard MW

Founder of the "Langton's Fine Wine Classification of Australian Wine" (one of the key references for Australian premium wine) and Wine Principal of the Woolworths Group in Australia (the largest wine retailer in Australia and one of the most influential internationally), Andrew is internationally respected as a wine writer/educator and auctioneer. He is also a talented artist.

Liz Wheadon

A wine industry professional with many years of experience, Liz is a General Manager for Glengarry Wines, having judged for leading wine competitions around the world. She has also a career in Gymsports in New Zealand.

Eduardo Dingler

Eduardo is the host of 'Sake Drinker and Friends Show' a monthly show
dedicated to Sake and the culture that it represents. 

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Chris Martin

WSET International Development Advisor. Chris develops WSET's presence throughout Asia and helps establish the Approved Programme
Providers. He also facilitates the International and marketing teams in trade and consumer events around the world.

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​Rowald Hepp

Rowald is the Managing Director and winemaker of Schloss Vollrads, one of the top German wine estates. He is dedicated to producing the highest possiblelevels of wine excellence and is deeply committed tothe Asian market.  He has been a regular Japan WineChallenge judge and supporter for many years.

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Neal Martin

Neal Martin is a wine critic and author based in the UK. As a senior editor, he reviews Bordeaux, Burgundy, South Africa, and New Zealand for Vinous. In 2012, Martin authored the award-winning book, Pomerol, widely acknowledged to be the definitive book on one of Bordeaux's least known appellations.


The Japan Wine Challenge was set up in 1997 as an independent wine competition, showing the wine world that Japan is a vibrant wine market to be taken seriously. Sincethis time we have grown in scale and scope to the point where we are the oldest and most respected and prestigious wine competition in Asia.

With the appointment of Steven Spurrier as Chairman from 2001 to 2011 a solid partnership developed with the Institute of Masters of Wine, the Japan Wine Challenge has also created a platform for developing local Japanese wine tasters into serious wine judges. 

We are honoured to have continued Chairmanship of John Salvi MW who is the longest-serving Master of Wine, and Katsuyuki Tanaka who is the most influential and the best taster in Japan, and again looking forward to some outstanding wines and results. 

Our continued association with the Institute of Masters of Wine, the San Francisco International Wine Competition and our team of expert judges (both international and local) ensures that all wines are given the optimum evaluation by a truly international and professional judging panel.

JWC International Judges

Accredited Judges

Japan Wine Challenge Accredited Judges

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