Friday, 4 November 2011
Jumillagate or more properly Murciagate: no answers from Robert Parker or Jay Miller
Is Pancho Campo MW now the official gatekeeper for the Wine Advocate in Spain?
On Wednesday I sent a series of questions to Robert Parker and Jay Miller about the charges and arrangements relating to Miller's proposed visit to Murcia (24th-26th November). I have yet to receive a reply not even an acknowledgement. See questions below
Furthermore as far as I'm aware there has been no comment from Robert Parker on this affair. He is, of course, the headlining star at Pancho Campo's Wine Future show (6th-8th November) in Hong Kong so is doubtless busy making his final preparations. However, the story first surfaced on 26th October, so Parker has had time to make a statement even if it is a brief one saying that the Murcia tariff will be fully investigated.
Does one assume that Parker is entirely happy with the Murcia arrangements that it is now normal to have a tariff (300€ for each sample, 500€ for a wine tasted in a masterclass and 2000€ for a visit from Jay Miller)?
Questions to Robert Parker – sent midday GMT 2.11.2011
I have recently been covering the controversy that has arisen over the arrangements of the proposed visit to Murcia: 24th -26th November by Jay Miller on Jim’s Loire. I have also been asked by decanter.com to cover this story.
Please see here:
I have some questions I would like to ask please.
a) When did you first become aware of the controversy sparked by the publication of the email sent by Juan Antonio Ruiz Jiménez on 4th October to a number of bodegas in the Murcia area?
b) What action have you taken following the revelation that bodegas in the Murcia region were being asked by Asevin to pay to send submit samples to taste and to be considered for the master class on 26th November 2011 with an additional fee if they wanted him to visit them.
I should make it clear that I am not suggesting or accusing Jay Miller of taking this money.
c) If you look at my post B that covers some emails sent during October in connection with the arrangements for Jay Miller’s visit to Murcia (24-26th) and the letter of complaint/explanation sent to me yesterday by Juan Antonio Ruiz Jiménez (post C) you will see that there is considerable variance between what Ruiz claims and what the earlier emails show.
details of an Asevin bank account were provided for participating bodegas to pay in arranged sums. Ruiz claims that no demands for payments were made.
Ruiz claims that there was to be a marketing seminar involving Pancho Campo and Jay Miller. The earlier emails make no mention of this seminar only a conference and master class (12 wines) with Jay Miller on the afternoon of Saturday 26th November lasting approximately two and half hours. The visit of Jay Miller to the region is subject of the emails of Ruiz (4.10.2011) and Teresa Torres (10.10.11). No mention of a seminar.
Do you believe that you should now establish the full circumstances surrounding of the visit to Murcia. If so, how will this be carried out?
d) What is the role of Pancho Campo MW for Jay Miller’s visit to Murcia and what has been his role in other visits to Spanish when he has accompanied Jay?
e) The business of Pancho Campo and The Wine Academy includes the promotion of Spanish wine regions and Spanish wine companies. A perfectly legitimate activity but do you not think that Jay Miller’s close association with Campo and The Wine Academy has inevitably called into question the independence and the reliability of the Spanish wine reviews?
Furthermore is this close association with Campo and The Wine Academy at variance with your ‘Our wine critics ethics and standards’?
I look forward to hearing from you as soon as possible, especially as I would naturally wish to include your comments in the news story for decanter.com
I have copied Jay Miller in and have also sent him some questions.
Many thanks and kind regards,
Questions to Jay Miller will be a separate post.