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Melissa Saunders MW

Melissa Saunders MW

Became an MW 2021

Based in United States

Nationality American


A native New Yorker, Melissa obtained a degree in English literature from the University of Colorado at Boulder. Post-grad, she moved to Italy, where she caught the food and wine bug. Law school landed Melissa back in New York, where she enrolled in WSET Diploma classes, ate, and drank well whenever possible. Melissa’s first introduction to the wine business was practising law with a firm specialised in alcohol beverage regulation. In 2009, she started Communal Brands, a wine import and distribution company. The portfolio consists of small growers committed to environmentally responsible practices in the vineyard and winery. Expanding on a commitment to sustainability, she recently started up Wine Queen, a consulting business that focuses on environmentally responsible wine packaging. When she is not being a mum of two or working, you will find her running long distances. Despite a demanding schedule, she always finds time for good Champagne.

Current employer: Communal Brands

Primary area(s) of work: Trade

Industry sector(s): Distribution, Agency/Importer

Specialisms: Distribution, Wine labels, Branding