September 5, 2010
New York, NY - XO TRAVEL CONSULTANTS, LTD. has been named among the WORLD’S TOP WINE TOURS by Travel & Leisure Magazine.
According to wine writer Bruce Schoenfield, on a well-crafted wine tour “it’s possible to gain entrée to the world’s most renowned producers, eat memorable meals, travel in sumptuous luxury, immerse yourself in local culture…all on the same trip.”
Named as the Best for Following a True Insider, Travel & Leisure cites 2 exceptional weeklong XO Travel Burgundy wine experiences for small groups of serious wine enthusiasts, wine collectors and food & wine professionals. The June tour - Burgundy From A to Z - is hosted by the British Master of Wine and Burgundy expert Clive Coates. The July program – The Village Master Class Series, focusing exclusively on a different important Burgundy wine appellation each year - is led by Allen (Burghound) Meadows, considered America’s most important Burgundy wine critic. Both programs are intense but not intimidating and include comprehensive vineyard visits and tastings with the most prestigious Burgundy producers as well as intimate winemaker dinners.
For over 20 years, XO Travel Consultants has created incomparable food & wine tours to the world's greatest wine regions from France , Italy, Spain and Germany to Australia, New Zealand, Argentina, Chile and South Africa, to emerging wine regions like Croatia, Hungary, Morocco, Turkey and China. Our tours, led by notable wine experts, highlight in depth tastings with the top winemakers, dining at Michelin-starred restaurants and local establishments with excellent regional cuisines and wine lists, as well as visits to local artisans and bustling markets.
Who We Are
PATRICIA NICHOLLS, Managing Director. British-born, a graduate of Kings College, London University, and the University of Salamanca, Spain, she has accumulated 25 years' experience in the travel industry and she speaks five languages fluently. She has worked professionally managing programs worldwide for a number of large US Tour Operators before starting XO Travel Consultants in 1987. She creates our exclusive XO Travel itineraries, personally researching and visiting all the tour destinations before their inclusion in any itinerary. Over the years she has developed a wide range of friendships and contacts throughout the food and wine world. She is a member of IACP.
JAMES HORWITZ, President. A graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, he has lived in Paris and London and the south of France and traveled the world for many years as a freelance journalist and writer, contributing to many international publications. He is a longtime wine enthusiast with numerous contacts in the wine world, and is a New York restaurant wine director and wine consultant.
Our Tour Experts
James Lawther M.W. - Bordeaux, Languedoc, Côtes du Rhône & Provence. James has been a Master of Wine for over 15 years, and is a well-known contributing editor to Decanter Magazine. He lives with his family near Bordeaux and hosts special wine tastings for XO Travel throughout Southern France.
Jacqueline Brugnon Lategan - South Africa & French Riviera. After more than 15 years in the South African wine trade and importing premium European wines, French-born Jacqueline handles XO Travel cruise programs, golf and gastronomy itineraries and escorts our popular trips to Southern Africa.
Gunda Dignac - Bordeaux & Spain. A qualified oenologist, with unique knowledge of the vineyards of Bordeaux, Gunda conducts many tours for us in the South West of France and Spain.
Françoise Kinoo - France, Paris. Françoise has been a licensed professional guide in Paris for many years and is also a noted specialist in the field of the Impressionists. With a home in the South West of France, she is a walking encyclopedia on French regional gastronomy.
André Lilty - Western Europe. André is considered one of the most experienced Tour Managers in Europe today, and has been working with us since XO Travel began in 1987. He has a passion for European history and culture and fine Bordeaux wines. He maintains homes in Paris and Arcachon, on the French Atlantic coast.
Julia Maxlow-Tomlinson - Italy & British Isles. Julia has escorted our garden tours of the British Isles to rave reviews from all our clients. She also accompanies our Italian food and wine tours, as she is also fluent in Italian and knows the country intimately.
Brendan Moore - Burgundy, Beaujolais, Southern France. Brendan has lived in Burgundy with his family for many years and became a free-lance guide after several years as export manager at Domaine Laroche in Chablis. He is an enthusiastic fan of pinot noir and chardonnay, with an insider's unrivalled knowledge of the region.
XO Travel Consultants will continue to create and offer to our XO Travellers The World's Top Wine Tours.