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Latest crop of Fortnum & Mason drink writers announced

Published:  13 September, 2021

The Fortnum & Mason Food and Drink Awards, championing “excellence on food and drink writing”, have again delivered a winning roster of up-and-coming and established drinks writers for 2021.

Announced late last week, we’ve honed in below on the drinks shortlists and winners, which this year included Hamish Smith, editor of Harpers’ sibling publication CLASS Magazine.

The award for top Drink Book went to Victoria James, at 21 named as America’s youngest sommelier, and who has written about the “glamorous, yet toxic, fine dining world”, causing some stir with her lid-lifting publication.

The Debut Drinks Book went to Cas Oh for Recipes & Histories of Classic Cocktails, “an indispensable A-Z guide to classic cocktail” that was five years in the making.

Meanwhile, the Drink Writer gong was taken by Will Hawkes (pictured) for work in Pellicle Magazine and Tonic Magazine. The two shortlisted runners up in this category were the ever-excellent and double-nominated Fiona Beckett for work in The Guardian, plus CLASS editor Hamish Smith, who has had to steer this bar-focused publication throughout the tumultuous times faced by that sector of the drinks industry.

Drink Book

Winner: Wine Girl by Victoria James, published by Little, Brown Book Group/Fleet imprint

Shortlist: How To Drink Without Drinking by Fiona Beckett, published by Kyle Books/Octopus

Shortlist: Inside Bordeaux by Jane Anson, published by Berry Bros. & Rudd Press

Debut Drink Book

Winner: Co-Specs: Recipes & Histories of Classic Cocktails by Cas Oh, published by Cazerac Publishing

Shortlist: Which Wine When by Bert Blaize and Claire Strickett, published by Ebury Press

Shortlist: Drink? By Professor David Nutt, published by Yellow Kite

Drink Writer

Winner: Will Hawkes for work in Pellicle Magazine and Tonic Magazine

Shortlist: Fiona Beckett for work in The Guardian Feast

Shortlist: Hamish Smith for work in CLASS Magazine