AWE Member
Post-nominal initials



Belfast, Northern Ireland


Nothern Ireland





Available for

Corporate events, Club/Society tastings, Private tastings, Wine courses, Trade/Sommelier training, Public/trade wine shows, Food and wine matching, Wine tours

Other wine work

Wine list advice, Wine tasting notes.


France, Loire, Champagne & Sparkling Wine, Bordeaux, Beaujolais, Rhone, Spain, Sherry, Rioja & Navarra, Catalonia, Italy, Sicily, South Africa, Chile, Argentina, Uruguay, New Zealand, Australia,


WSET Diploma 1993 CIVB accredited Bordeaux International Educator (Diploma) – July 2006

WSET / Consejo Regulador de Jerez accredited Sherry Educator – August 2006, FPC

D.O. Cava Advanced Level Educator – Feb. 2023

Company Name

The Wine Authority / Abel Consultancy


Alastair never drank wine until about the age of 23 but having visited a local wine merchant and completing their little wine course particularly after tasting a “proper” German Riesling having only tried Liebfraumilch previously! He became fascinated with the world of wine including the history and Geography as well as the diversity of wine itself. He completed the WSET wine courses including Diploma and was approached by Queens University Belfast in 1993 to conduct wine appreciation courses for their Open Learning sessions whilst still employed in financial services. Alastair is now a self employed wine consultant, educator, photographer & writer since 2004 and joined Classic Wine (N.I.) Ltd in Oct. 2004 as Senior Wine Adviser and Harry’s Road Fine Wines / Nick’s Wines as wine consultant in June 2008 – both wine & spirits importers in wholesale & retail.

Past Chairman & current Vice President and programme co-ordinator of Northern Ireland Wine & Spirit Institute since Nov. 2002 – (see ) and committee member since Nov. 1997, producing annual programme of events and arranging speakers including Masters of Wine, wine producers and local wine merchants. I have also been involved in organising wine study trips to wine regions including Alsace, Champagne, Burgundy, Bordeaux, Languedoc / Roussillon, Loire, Rioja & Navarra, Sicily, Luxembourg and South Africa. Lecturer on wine @ Queens University Belfast, Open Learning since Sept 1993. Lecturer on wine @ Northern College (Newtownabbey) Sept. 2004. Lecturer on Wine at Stranmillis College, Belfast Lifelong Learning 2019. 1st Northern Ireland Wine Taster of the Year Nov. 2000 (sponsored by Belfast Telegraph, Direct Wine Shipments & Viña Santa Rita – Chile) & finalist 2001 (not held since). I organise and present wine seminars to wine clubs, wine circles, wine institutes and private groups throughout N. Ireland, U.K. & worldwide. I organise and present wine Masterclasses for local wine merchants particularly in recent years with Direct Wine Shipments. Winner of Wine Magazine & Robert Mondavi Amateur Photographer of the Year 2000Published travel & wine writer – Real Travel Magazine on Bordeaux and Licensed & Catering News (Wine, Gin & Whiskey)Member and past Chairman of Bangor & North Down Camera Club. Previously 30 years in financial services sales support – 25 years in management to May 2004.

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