Hawk Wakawaka, aka Elaine Chukan Brown

Be the change you wish to see in the world. -Gandhi

Elaine Chukan Brown serves as the American Specialist at JancisRobinson.com, a contributing writer withWine & Spirits Magazine, and a speaker at events worldwide. Her work has been featured in World of Fine Wine, DecanterRobb Report, MensHealth.com, GuildSomm.comWine Business MonthlySan Francisco Magazine, Alquimie and Noble Rot, among others. She also contributed to the recent multi-award winning 4th edition of the Oxford Companion to Wine. Blessed with travel, and a wealth of in-depth time with vintners from around the world, she uses WakawakaWineReviews.com to share more of the story.

Brown is known for having created illustrated tasting notes, which have been described by @KermitLynchWine as “a new standard in wine reviews.” Since, such illustrated tasting notes have become a creative new alternative for beer and spirits as well. Her illustration work has been featured in Wine & Spirits MagazineWorld of Fine Wine, Gourmet Traveller WineAlquimieSeriousEats.com, and Imbibe. Australia’s Wine Business Magazine recognized her first wine label for Between Five Bells wines as their “Beautiful Thing of the Week” upon its release. Her illustrated wall pieces can also be found in wineries, restaurants, and homes around the world.

Hawk Wakawaka Wine Reviews has been rated among the world’s leading wine blogs recommended by Food & Wine Magazine, The New York Times, Saveur Magazine, The Washington Post, The Los Angeles Times, The Portland Times, The Daily Beast and The Style Caster, among others.

As a celebrated keynote speaker, she has been a guest and led seminars about wine, writing, and inspiration around the world. Such speaking engagements have included The Women in Wine Leadership SymposiumPinot Noir NZ, The Central Otago Pinot Noir CelebrationTexsom, the UC Davis Viticulture & Enology Program, ProWine China, as well as ProWein Germany, and the International Pinot Noir Celebration.

Wine & Spirits selected her as one of fifty Master’s of Place to feature in their Autumn 2016 special edition. In 2015 she was awarded the Frank Prial Fellowship by the Napa Valley Wine Writer Symposium for her work in both The World of Fine Wine, and Wine & Spirits Magazine. Food & Wine Magazine named her one of the world’s top wine blogs in their “Guide to the Digital Wine Universe.” She has been named by Imbibe Magazine as an Imbibe 75 “Person to Watch,” a Grape Collective Top-25 person to follow on Instagram, and a finalist for the Saveur Magazine Best Food Blog Awards in both 2014 and 2015. She has also been a finalist for eight Wine Blog Awards in four years.

Brown’s previous work as an academic philosopher informs her views of wine, and people. She brings the rigor, thoroughness, and clarity demanded of her previous career forward to her work with wine. In traveling wine regions, and interviewing people in wine, her primary goal is always to witness the life in front of her, be it in the person or the glass.

Elaine previously served as Dartmouth College’s Charles A Eastman Fellow, a McGill University Tomlinson Fellow, Bristol Bay Native Corporation’s Student of the Year, and others. As philosophy faculty of Northern Arizona University she was named a recognized faculty member and nominated for teaching awards for her influential work with students. She has presented at conferences in Russia, Czech Republic, Canada, New Zealand and throughout the United States as both a philosopher and poet. Her academic work has been published by both Cambridge Scholarly Press, and Fulcrum: An Anthology of Poetry and Aesthetics, among others.

She began life through her 20s as a commercial salmon fisherman in Bristol Bay, Alaska, where her family still operate their businesses. However, her favorite job has been as a volunteer animal trainer and ranch hand working with camels and other exotics for River’s Crest Dragon Slayer’s in Aptos, California. Elaine, her daughter, Rachel, and their pets currently live in Sonoma, California.

Cheers! Live Sincerely.


To learn more about my experience as a public speaker and panel moderator, click here.