Michelin, the French company behind the famous restaurant guide of the same name, has announced that it had acquired 100% of Robert Parker’s Wine Advocate.
It’s the culmination of a partnership that began in 2017, when Michelin acquired a 40% stake in the company. The 2017 announcement came after the two companies had collaborated in Singapore, Hong Kong and Macau, by bringing together highly rated wines with food created by Michelin chefs.
The Wine Advocate was founded in 1978 by lawyer Robert Parker, who modelled himself on consumer advocate Ralph Nader. Parker introduced the 100-point wine scale, now used by critics around the world. In the decades after he launched his bi-monthly newsletter, Parker became one of the most powerful voices in wine, whose ratings could cause a wine to sell out, or its price to rise.
In 2001, Parker began delegating different wine regions to other critics. In 2012, a majority stake in The Wine Advocate was sold to a group of Singapore investors, where a second editorial office was opened and Lisa Perrotti-Brown MW was appointed editor-in-chief. Robert Parker began to wind down his role, and formally retired in May this year.
In a statement, the Wine Advocate said that the full integration with Michelin “will ensure the long-term synergies between oenology and gastronomy through the pursuit of experiences based on food and wine pairing, as well as the creation of new digital content and services.”
"Leading RPWA's passionate teams is not only thrilling, but also an incredible opportunity to combine the strengths of the MICHELIN Guide and the Wine Advocate," said Nicolas Achard, the newly appointed CEO of RPWA. "People curious about wine and gastronomy will be offered a unique set of experiences thanks to the internationally-recognized know-how and independent, unbiased selections of both companies."
The new team's ambitions include expanding the Advocate’s geographical reach, developing digital offerings that combine food and wine, and providing “exclusive experiences”.
"Our entire team of reviewers looks forward to pursuing this one-of-a-kind mission to achieve the company's new strategic ambitions that will strengthen our relationship with our subscribers," said Perrotti-Brown MW, editor-in-chief for the Wine Advocate in the United States.
The Michelin Guides, which have been produced by French tyre company for more than a century, reviews restaurants. Restaurants that are awarded the coveted stars can see their fame and bookings rise.