ASI presents new logo and monthly newsletter

by Andrés Rosberg

version française ci-dessous

Welcome to our first issue of #ASInews!

Please allow me to introduce our inaugural newsletter, which will be sent to you in the beginning of each month with the news of ASI, its national member associations, and, of course, its partners. We encourage you to resend it to the members of your association, and to share your news with us so we can tell the world about it!

ASI is now gearing up for its first continental competition of the year: the ASI & APAS Best Sommelier of the Americas contest, which will be held at the end of May in the fantastic city of Montreal, Canada, and will gather together the best two somms from eleven Pan American countries. This major event is a tremendous opportunity to increase the exposure of our global association and to improve the overall level of sommellerie throughout the Americas, and we will report about it in next month’s issue of #ASInews.

Also, after ten months of hard work of the new Board and Committees of ASI, we’re starting to reap what we have sown. There is more and more good news coming our way.  Today we are honoured to unveil ASI’s new logo to the world, approved by the vast majority of our members, and praised by our partners!  There is something intrinsically universal in the shape of a circle that perfectly symbolizes the very nature of ASI. From a practical standpoint, the circle is also an incredibly versatile form that ideally suits our needs!

Building on a rich history, ASI is evolving to meet the needs of both current and future generations.  The new logo and newsletter are just two examples of how ASI envisions its future by creating opportunities for increased member and industry engagement, building international commitment to the profession, and expanding outreach to the sommellerie community.  In other words, making our association stronger and more global than ever.

Enjoy reading and we look forward to having you with us on the journey!


par Andrés Rosberg

L’ASI présente son nouveau logo institutionnel et sa Newsletter mensuelle

Bienvenue à notre première édition #ASInews !

Permettez-moi de vous présenter notre nouveau bulletin d’information qui vous sera adressé au début de chaque mois avec des nouvelles de l’ASI, de ses associations nationales et, bien sûr, de ses partenaires. Nous vous encourageons à la faire parvenir aux membres de votre association et à partager vos nouvelles avec nous pour que nous les répercutions dans le monde entier !

L’ASI est maintenant à la veille de son premier concours continental de l’année : le Concours ASI & APAS du Meilleur Sommelier des Amériques qui va se dérouler fin mai dans la ville fantastique de Montréal au Canada et réunira les deux meilleurs sommeliers de 11 pays panaméricains. Cet évènement majeur représente une formidable occasion de mettre en avant notre association et de faire monter le niveau général de la sommellerie dans les Amériques. Nous nous en ferons l’écho in extenso dans notre prochaine édition de #ASInews.

Par ailleurs, après dix mois de travail acharné au sein du Bureau et des Commissions de l’ASI, nous commençons à récolter ce que nous avons semé. De plus en plus de bonnes nouvelles s’annoncent. Aujourd’hui, nous avons l’honneur de dévoiler au monde le nouveau logo de l’ASI, approuvé par une énorme majorité de nos membres et apprécié par nos partenaires. Le cercle est intrinséquement universel et symbolise parfaitement la nature même de l’ASI. Et d’un point de vue pratique, le cercle peut s’adapter de manière incroyable, ce qui répond idéalement à nos besoins.

En se basant sur un passé riche, l’ASI évolue pour répondre aux besoins à la fois de la génération actuelle et des générations à venir. Le nouveau logo et la newsletter sont juste deux exemples de la façon dont l’ASI envisage son avenir, en créant des opportunités dans le but d’augmenter le nombre de ses membres et l’engagement du secteur, en suscitant un soutien accru à notre profession, en multipliant les ouvertures pour la communauté des sommeliers. Autrement dit, rendre notre association encore plus forte et plus universelle que jamais.

Bonne lecture ! Nous  nous réjouissons de vous embarquer dans ce voyage…

New image of ASI

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As promised before the elections in Bordeaux, and after a few months of hard work by both the ASI P.R., Communications and Marketing Committee and the ASI Board, we are finally pleased to present the final ASI logo, approved by its members.  Voting for a new logo was done by email.  48 out of 56 ASI members responded, resulting in 96% of voters expressing a firm and honest ‘Yes’ and validation of the new design.

The new ASI logo will be officially presented during next GA in Georgia, and we wanted to use it in the upcoming APAS contest in Montreal during May 2018.

We wanted ASI’s image to be characterized by an elegant, sober, prestigious, smart style and, to be timeless with a classic look. ASI’s identity had to be an ‘umbrella’ for many other brands (national associations, etc.), it had to encompass them. It was therefore decided to avoid the looks of a commercial brand, and to look, instead, for a ‘seal of quality’.

With inspiration from Caravaggio’s Bacchus crown, made with vine leaves, this new identity for ASI also has the shape of a circle, which is a shape that has been relevant since the beginning of time. Whether it was in religion’s use of the compass as a symbol of creation, in Leonardo’s divine proportions, in Plato’s perfect form, in Japan’s tradition of ensō hand-drawn circles symbolizing enlightenment and elegance, in astronomy and nature, and even in food and wine, the circle is omnipresent. There is something intrinsically “divine” and universal to be found in a circle that perfectly symbolizes the very nature of ASI.

The new logo and its shape are also perfect for application in medals, plates, pins, and even social media profile pictures – so it perfectly suits our needs!

 

 


La nouvelle image de l’ASI

Comme promis avant les élections de Bordeaux et après des mois de dur travail de la Commisssion RP, Communication & Marketing et du Bureau de l’ASI, nous sommes enfin heureux de vous présenter la version finale du logo de l’ASI approuvée par les membres de l’ASI. Le vote pour ce nouveau logo s’est fait par courriel. 46 associations sur 56 se sont exprimées. Et un OUI franc et massif, à 96% des votants, a validé ce nouveau logo.

Le logo de l’ASI sera officiellement présenté pendant l’AG en Géorgie  mais nous souhaitions l’utiliser dès  ce mois de mai à Montréal pour le concours des Amériques.

Nous voulions que l’image de l’ASI soit à la fois élégante, sobre, prestigieuse, stylée, intemporelle, donc plutôt classique.

La signature de l’ASI doit également être une référence, représenter un lien de parenté avec d’autres entités comme les associations nationales… Une homologation en quelque sorte. Voilà pourquoi nous avons décidé d’éviter tout trait commercial et rechercher en revanche un “sceau de qualité”.

C’est de la couronne du Bacchus du Caravage, faite de feuilles de vigne, qu’est venue l’inspiration. Cette nouvelle identité de l’ASI devait aussi s’inscrire dans un cercle, une forme qui se retrouve à travers les siècles. Que ce soit le symbole religieux de la création, dans les proportions divines de Léonard de Vinci, dans la forme parfaite de Platon, dans la tradition japonaise du ensō –des cercles symbolisant les lumières et l’élégance, dans l’astronomie et la nature, jusque dans le vin et la nourriture, le cercle est omniprésent. Il y a quelque chose d’intrinséquement “divin” et universel dans le cercle qui symbolise parfaitement la nature même de l’ASI.

Est-il utile d’ajouter que ce nouveau logo et sa forme sont également parfaits pour être reproduits sur des médailles, plats, épinglettes, et même en photos de profil pour les media sociaux ? Ce qui signifie que cela correspond tout à fait à nos besoins !

New president of Uruguay Sommelier Association is Adriana Rossi

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In April 2018, Uruguay Sommelier Association – AUSP had elections for a new president of the association.

The new president is 34 years young Adriana Rossi from Montevideo.

Adriana started her professional education in beverages in 2012, and since then she became an expert in different fields: beers, coffee and sommelier.

She graduated as a sommelier in 2013 by The Uruguayan Chemistry University – UdelaR.

She has worked in the gastronomy business for ten years. Nowadays she is co-owner and manager of ‘Los Horneros’, a wine and beer-focused store.  She organizes tastings and workshops in her store, for other groups and gives lectures on wine and beer.

We asked her two important questions about the vision and mission. Here is what she had to say:

Q1: What is your vision for the future for the association of sommeliers in Uruguay?

Adriana: Our team goal is to have the profession of sommelier legally recognized in our country.

We are focused on getting more Sommeliers involved in the association and enlarge the number of enrolled members.

And last but not least to give support and academic development for all the associates pushing our profession to the next level.

Q2: How do you see development/promotion of the sommelier profession in Uruguay and the world?

Adriana: The presence and importance of the sommelier have increased considerably in the last ten years in Uruguay. In the world, progress has been even more significant with famous names linked to different wine sectors.

As for the promotion, we still a long way to open doors and build strategic alliances that allow us to show our abilities as ambassadors of wine culture.


Adriana Rossi, une nouvelle présidente pour l’Association Uruguayenne des Sommeliers

En avril 2018, l’Association Uruguayenne des sommeliers (AUSP) a élu son nouveau président.

Et c’est une présidente de 34 ans, Adriana Rossi, de Montevideo.

Adriana a démarré ses études dans le domaine des boissons en 2012. Elle est devenue ensuite une experte dans divers domaines, bières, cafés, et… sommelier.

Elle a obtenu son diplôme de sommelier en 2013 à l’Uruguayan Chemestry University.

Cela fait dix ans qu’elle travaille dans le monde de la gastronomie. Elle est co-propriétaire et gérante de “Los Horneros” un magasin dédié au vin et à la bière. Elle organise des dégustations et des ateliers dans la boutique pour divers groupes et donne des conférences sur le vin et la bière.

Nous lui avons posé deux questions importantes concernant sa vison et sa mission.

Q1: Quelle est votre vision pour l’avenir de l’association des sommeliers en Uruguay?

Adriana:  Le but de notre équipe est de faire reconnaître légalement le métier de sommelier dans notre pays.

Nous voulons attirer plus de sommeliers dans notre association et agrandir le cercle de nos membres.

Et enfin, mais tout aussi important, nous voulons soutenir le développement académique de nos membres et porter ainsi notre profession vers un plus haut niveau.

Q2: Comment voyez-vous le développement/la promotion de la profession de sommelier en Uruguay et dans le monde ?

Adriana: La présence et l’importance du sommelier se sont considérablement accrues ces dix dernières années en Uruguay. Dans le monde, les progrès ont été encore plus importants avec des noms célèbres dans différents secteurs du vin.

Quant à la promotion, il y a encore un long chemin devant nous en espérant ouvrir des portes et construire des alliances stratégiques en tant qu’ambassadeurs de la culture du vin.

Best sommelier of Ireland in 2018 is Julie Dupouy Young

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Julie has been in the wine business since 2003. She started working in France and shortly after moved to Ireland with a short stop in Belgium, Luxembourg and Scotland too.

Her education started with languages and French literature studies, but she decided to go to catering as she wanted to become a sommelier. Julie passed her “mention complementaire sommellerie” in 2003. Since then she has studied with the WSET and achieved Diploma in 2015 as well as WSET Level in Sake in 2017.

She has held the title of best sommelier of Ireland since 2009. Before competing in Ireland, she entered the Best Sommelier in France in 2008 and was one of the 12 semi-finalists.

Julie also competed at the World Championship in Tokyo and Mendoza and the European championship in San Remo and Vienna.

Her best international performance was at the World Sommelier Contest in Mendoza 2016, where she placed 3rd.

Her dream is to show to the world that a lady can be No1 in the world of sommellerie.

Her qualities as a sommelier are widely recognised and as a judge in some of the most prestigious wine events in the world, the Decanter Awards in London among others.

Today she is working as a sommelier in a Michelin-star restaurant called Chapter One in Dublin 1.

As Best Sommelier of Ireland in 2018, we asked her few questions, and here is her response:

Q1: You won the sommelier contest in Ireland in 2018. Did you expect it and how do you feel about it?

Julie: I am delighted to have won the title of Best Sommelier of Ireland again. You can’t ever expect to win a competition. You can be confident that you have done the work and that you have the potential to earn it, but you still need to be able to deliver your best on the day. Things went very well this time, and I am delighted with the result.

Q2: How do you think the title of Best Sommelier of Ireland will change your life?

Julie:  I am incredibly proud to have won Best Sommelier, and hopefully this will give me the opportunity to work towards my ultimate goal and dream which would be the first woman to win the World title. This title would then allow me the platform to inspire other sommeliers, particularly women.

Q3: What is the status of sommeliers in Ireland? What can be improved?

Julie: Despite the fact that we do see a considerable amount of improvement regarding the wine culture in Ireland, there are not many sommeliers in the country. First of all, there is no official qualification delivered in the country to become a sommelier. I think it would be fantastic if we could see a sommelier certificate offered by the catering schools in Ireland. The WSET is very present, but the focus is on knowledge and not the service aspect of the job. A few people in the country now travel around Europe to attend the Court of Master Sommelier classes which shows that there is a growing interest and that people are willing to invest in their wine qualification, often taking time off on their holidays, but I believe that it should be available in the country.

Q4: You have a great knowledge about food and wine. What do you think you can do to promote your national beverages and gastronomy?

I absolutely love the food offering in Ireland lately. The standards of quality, especially when it comes to meat, dairy products, locally grown vegetables and sea food is outstanding and I do my best to spread the good word as much as I can on social media. I also have been invited to talk at “Food on the Edge” this coming October which is a great honour as ethical eating and food education is a topic which is very dear to me. Regarding beverages the offering of craft beers, gin and whisky has boomed in the last few years and I am always proud to bring some examples with me to different countries I go to introduce them to my colleagues and peers. In Chapter One Restaurant we also have by the glass the only Irish wine produced by Lusca and a strawberry wine produced by the Wicklow Way Wines, it gives an opportunity to the tourists visiting the restaurant to sample some local beverages and to the locals to discover some products they might not be familiar with.


Le meilleur Sommelier d’Irlande 2018 est Julie Dupouy Young

Julie est dans le monde du vin depuis 2003. Elle a commencé à travailler en France puis s’est rapidement installée en Irlande après un détour par la Belgique, le Luxembourg et l’Ecosse.

Ses études se sont faites d’abord dans les langues étrangères et la littérature française mais elle a décidé de se tourner vers la restauration car elle désirait devenir sommelier. En 2003 elle décroché la “mention complémentaire sommellerie”. Puis elle a suivi le WSET, réussi le Diploma en 2015 ainsi que le WSET Level in Saké en 2017.

Julie a obtenu le titre de Meilleur Sommelier d’Irlande dès 2009. Avant de concourir en Irlande, elle avait participé au Concours du Meilleur Sommelier de France en 2008 et avait été  parmi les 12 demi-finalistes.

Julie a également participé aux Concours du Meilleur Sommelier du Monde à Tokyo en 2013 puis en 2016 à Mendoza, ainsi qu’au concours Europe à SanRemo en 2014 puis à Vienne en 2017.

Sa meilleure performance internationale est sa place de 3ème à Mendoza au Mondial 2016.

Son rêve, c’est de démontrer qu’une femme peut devenir n°1 dans le monde de la sommellerie.

Ses qualités de sommelier sont largement reconnues n’en atteste que son rôle de juge dans l’un des concours de vin les plus prestigieux au monde, les Decanter Awards à Londres, parmi d’autres.

Actuellement, elle est le sommelier d’un restaurant étoilé Michelin à Dublin, le Chapter One.

Nous lui avons posé quelques questions en tant que Meilleur Sommelier d’Irlande. Voici ses réponses :

Q1: Vous avez remporté ce concours 2018. Vous y attendiez-vous ? Et que ressentez-vous ?

Julie: Je suis ravie d’avoir gagné une fois de plus le titre de Meilleur Sommelier d”irlande. On ne peut jamais s’attendre à gagner. On peut être confiant parce que le travail en amont a été fait et que le potentiel pour une victoire est là mais encore faut-il pouvoir arriver à se donner à 100% le jour J. Cette fois-ci, tout s’est très bien déroulé et je suis très heureuse du résultat.

Q2: En quoi pensez-vous que ce titre de Meilleur Sommelier d’ Irlande va changer votre vie ?

Julie: Je suis très fière d’avoir remporté le titre de Meilleur Sommelier d’Irlande et j’espère que cela me donnera l’opportunité de poursuivre mon but ultime qui est d’être la première femme à décrocher le titre mondial. Ce titre me permettrait alors de pouvoir inspirer d’autres sommeliers et en particulier des femmes sommelières.

Q3: Quel est le statut du sommelier au Irlande ? En quoi peut-il y avoir des améliorations ?

Julie: Bien que la culture du vin se soit énormément développée ces dix dernières années, il n’y a pas beaucoup de sommeliers en Irlande. Le fait est qu’il n’y a pas de certificat officiel délivré dans le pays. Cela serait fantastique si un diplôme de sommelier, reconnu par l’état, pouvait être donné dans les écoles hôtelières. Le WSET est très présent mais leur formation ne focalise que sur les connaissances du vin, pas sur son service. Quelques jeunes professionnels dans le pays sont inscrits au cours de la Court of Master Sommelier, et voyagent aux quatre coins de l’Europe, souvent à leurs frais et sur leur temps de vacances, pour assister à ces cours. Cela prouve bien que l’intérêt et la passion sont là. Je crois vraiment qu’un diplôme devrait être mis en place dans le pays.

Q4: Vous avez une grande connaissance de la gastronomie et du vin. De quelle manière pensez-vous pouvoir promouvoir votre gastronomie et vos boissons nationales ?

Julie: Je dois avouer que je suis totalement conquise par la qualité des produits et ingrédients offerts en Irlande. Notamment la qualité de la viande, des produits laitiers, des légumes locaux et des produits de la mer. Je fais de mon mieux pour les promouvoir sur les réseaux sociaux. Je viens aussi d’être invitée à participer à “Food on the Edge” au mois d’Octobre ce qui est vraiment un honneur sachant que la production éthique de produits alimentaires et la nutrition sont des sujets qui me tiennent vraiment à coeur. En ce qui concerne les boissons locales, je suis toujours très fière de pouvoir les partager avec mes collègues lors de mes voyages afin de les leur faire découvrir. A Chapter One, le Restaurant où je travaille, nous servons au verre les vins du Domaine Lusca, qui est le seul producteur de vins en Irlande et le vin de Fraise de chez Wicklow Way Wines. Cela permet aux touristes curieux de découvrir des spécialités locales et aux Dublinois de re-déguster ou découvrir des boissons irlandaises.

Best sommelier of Brazil in 2018 is Diego Arrebola

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Diego has been involved in the wine world since 2004 and has gone through several levels of training since then. In 2014 he received his ASI certified sommelier designation, the first and currently the only one in Brazil. Having worked seven years in catering, in 2011, Diego started his own business as an independent professional. He is a consultant for restaurants, importers, producers, local and national promotional organizations, organizes numerous wine events and training courses. Diego runs WSET courses for Eno Cultura and has been named Educator of the Year 2017 for WSET. Today, he is co-owner of an EntreCopos consulting office (between glasses).

Diego won the 2018 contest in Brazil, and we asked him some questions.

Q1: You won the Brazilian contest in 2018. Did you expect it and how do you feel about it?

Diego: I don’t think anybody expects something like that. I did want it for sure.  I did my best to prepare for it, but anything can happen in the finals. It was a great moment of joy, and also an honour, to have the chance to once again, represent Brazil in the next international competitions.

Q2: How do you think the title of Best Sommelier of Brazil will change your life?

Diego: Since it was my third time in a row, it won’t change that much.  However, in 2012, when I won the title for the first time, it allowed me to attract a lot of attention from our market, as I lived and worked outside of our main cities.

This time, what has changed, is that I’ll have more time to prepare for the Best Sommelier of the World contest.

Q3: How is the status of sommeliers in Brazil? What can be improved?

Diego: The Brazilian market is emerging from economic and political turmoil; therefore, it is not the best moment for such analysis. I do believe that we have a tremendous potential to be explored, but at this moment we don’t have enough jobs or proper payment for real professionals.

Q4: You have excellent knowledge of food and wine. What do you think you can do to promote your national beverages and gastronomy?

Diego: It’s not just me.  Brazilian sommeliers have worked for some time to show our consumers that yes, they can enjoy Brazilian food with a variety of international wines and beverages. We have a history of bad wines, made with non-vinifera grapes, so it is a bit of a challenge to convince customers to try high-quality Brazilian wines, but it is a challenge we are not willing to set aside for the moment.


Le meilleur Sommelier du Brésil 2018 est Diego Arrebola

Diego est dans le monde du vin depuis 2004 et il a franchi plusieurs niveaux de formation depuis lors. En 2014 il a été certifié sommelier ASI, le premier et toujours le seul au Brésil. Il a travaillé sept ans dans la restauration et en 2011 il a démarré sa propre affaire en tant que professionnel indépendant. Il est consultant pour des restaurants, importateurs, producteurs, des organisations locales et nationales de promotion, anime de nombreux évènements autour du vin et des cours de formation. Il dirige des cours WSET pour Eno Cultura et a été nommé Educator of the Year 2017 for WSET. Aujourd(hui, il est co-propriétaire d’un bureau de conseil EntreCopos (Entre verres).

Diego a remporté le concours 2018 au Brésil et nous lui avons posé quelques questions.

Q1: Vous avez remporté ce concours 2018. Vous y attendiez-vous ? Et que ressentez-vous ?

Diego: Je ne pense pas que qui que ce soit puisse s’attendre à cela. C’était ce que je voulais, bien sûr, et je me suis préparé au mieux dans ce but. Mais, en fin de compte, n’importe quoi peut se passer en finale. Cela a été un grand moment de joie et c’est aussi un honneur d’avoir la chance de représenter à nouveau le Brésil dans les prochains concours internationaux.

Q2: En quoi pensez-vous que ce titre de Meilleur Sommelier du Brésil va changer votre vie ?

Diego: Étant donné que cela m’arrive pour la troisième fois consécutive, ça ne va pas changer grand-chose. Pourtant, en 2012, quand j’ai remporté ce titre pour la première fois, cela m’a permis d’attirer sur moi l’attention de notre marché d’autant que je vivais loin des grandes villes.

Cette fois-ci, ce qui change vraiment, c’est que je vais avoir plus de temps pour préparer le Mondial.

Q3: Quel est le statut du sommelier au Brésil ? En quoi peut-il y avoir des améliorations ?

Diego: Le marché brésilien est entrain de sortir d’une crise économique et politique  et ce n’est pas le meilleur moment pour analyser la situation. Je pense que nous avons un gros potentiel qui reste à explorer mais pour l’instant nous n’avons pas assez de propositions de travail ni des salaires décents pour de vrais professionnels.

Q4: Vous avez une grande connaissance de la gastronomie et du vin. De quelle manière pensez-vous pouvoir promouvoir votre gastronomie et vos boissons nationales ?

Diego: Il n’y a pas que moi. Mais de plus en plus de sommeliers brésiliens s’attachent depuis quelque temps à démontrer que les plats brésiliens peuvent se déguster avec une variété de boissons et de vins internationaux. On a un passé de mauvais vins faits à partir de cépages non issus de vitis vinifera, alors maintenant c’est un vrai challenge de convaincre les clients de choisir un vin brésilien de grande qualité. Mais c’est un défi que nous ne voulons pas laisser de côté.

NEW ASI Communication Team is in full motion

by Andrés Rosberg

As sommeliers, we are communicators, forever telling the stories of wine, regions, flavors, vintages and people. Communicating about wine is our passion and it is an essential part of our work.

ASI is no different. We want to share our vision, challenges, achievements, dreams and all the news with our global family. ASI is made up of 58 national sommelier associations in five continents. Improving communications is a great way to bring us closer together, promote our profession, and strengthen our role as the leading international organization in the world of sommellerie.

On Nov. 18, 2017 I sent each association a letter about the composition of the different committees and I told you about our plans to issue a Newsletter during 2018.

Today I want to share this first edition of our monthly newsletter, which will be a vehicle to share news, information, opinions and work. It is the result of the work of our new PR, Communications and Marketing committee, directed by Michèle Chantôme, coordinated by Gabriel Dvoskin, and subdivided into three sections managed by Véronique Rivest (Marketing & PR), Liora Levi (Press & Communications) and Djurdja Katic (Internal Communication & Reporting).

During our first meeting in early March, the team worked on several fronts to establish best methods for articulating and disseminating ASI’s vision and developing communication guidelines for all international competitions. Their work includes the structuring of ASI’s social media channels to make them more efficient, developing requirements for a new website and a new logo, establishing contact with media and creating conditions to start building an inclusive press network with our member organizations.

Stay tuned for more information on world sommellerie. The closer we work the more growth we will bring to our profession and to the national sommelier associations in ASI.

Best sommelier of Norway in 2018 is Henrik Dahl Jahnsen

Henrik is in a restaurant business since 2010 and since than he was  working on several different positions in hospitality service, as chef apprentice to a sommelier and general manager mostly in Bølgen & Moi Ny-Hellesund and nowadays as a sommelier at  Bølgen & Moi Kristiansand.

In a 2008/2009  he was educated  at Catering School, Kristiansand. In 2010 he did WSET Advanced, Pass with Merit and in 2012 did sommelier, best of the year at Kulinarisk Akademi.

His resume in competitions in a just a seven years is really impressive:

  • 2018: 1st. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2017: 2nd. Place Nordic Sommelier Championships
  • 2017: Quarter-finalist A.S.I. Best Sommelier of Europe
  • 2017: 2nd. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2016: Semi-finalist Nordic Sommelier Championships
  • 2016: Semi-Finalist; A.S.I. Best Sommelier of the World (11th place)
  • 2016: 1st. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2015: Semi-finalist Nordic Sommelier Championships
  • 2015: 3rd. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2014: Semi-finalist Nordic Sommelier Championships
  • 2014: 1st. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2013: Semi-finalist Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2012: 3rd. Place Norwegian Sommelier Championships
  • 2011: 1st. Place Norwegian Young Sommelier of the Year

We asked him a few questions about his third Champion title and future ideas. Check what he answered to us.

Q1:  You won Norwegian contest for the third time. Did you expect it and how do you feel about it? Was it easier or harder then previous times? 

Absolutely not, the level gets higher and higher every year and many of the previous finalists are competing year after year. I think it gets a little bit harder every year, perhaps not the competition itself, but the added pressure of having already won makes it even more important to perform well.

Q2: How do You think the title of Best Sommelier of Norway will change your life?

These kind of things are probably not that important in the Norwegian society, but I guess I would stand a good chance of getting a job at the best restaurants in the country.

Q3: How is the profession of sommeliers in Norway? What can be improved?

I think the sommelier profession is well taken care of in Norway, and many restaurants actually pay for the entire education and travel costs because they really want a Sommelier and they want to keep their experienced staff. To be a waiter is among the less paid jobs in Norway, but I still think it is possible to have a good life as salaries in Norway are generally quite reasonable and high compared to other countries. There is also a really good tip in many restaurants, and being a trained waiter or even better, Sommelier, gives you added value to most employers.

One important thing that I think should be improved is to make Sommelier a protected title, as there is still a few restaurants boasting about sommeliers without actually having them and the restaurant business needs and deserves more credit as we all work very hard to provide the best possible experience to our guests.

Q4: You have a great knowledge about food and wine. What do you think you can do to promote your national beverages and gastronomy?

This is a difficult one as we are not allowed to advertise for alcoholic beverages in Norway. I think the best way we can promote our national products is to use them more often on our menus and to talk more about them when we do. Norwegian beverages offer exciting and different combinations together with food, and in my experience the guests really like it when we give them something unexpected and locally produced.

New (old) president in Serbia is Dejan Živkoski

Dejan is in a hospitality business since 1987.

Since that time, he was working in the hotels and restaurants all over Serbia and abroad.

He entered Serbian sommelier Association in 2003 and was one of the founders of the association. He become president of SERSA for the first time in 2014 and he was re-elected in 2018 for his 2nd mandate, until 2022.

Since 2014 SERSA was the host of GA ASI in 2016 and in 2018 will be host for the very first Balkan Sommelier Challenge. Nowadays, beside the association he is owner and working at the Steak & Wine bar in Belgrade and F&B adviser at Consili group for hotels all over the world.

Check here what he told us about his plans and visions:

Q1: What is your vision/plans in the future for Serbia Sommelier Association? 

Most people have a general idea about what they want for their lives. The capacity to relay that vision to others for me is the challenge. Regarding me, this is something that sets apart a leader from the rest.

Serbian Sommelier Association after many years starts to drive on the highway, in this moment not at full speed, but it certainly grows day by day.

This year is big for all of us from Southeast Europe, very new page of Food and Beverage industry will be written with the Balkan Sommelier Challenge. Serbian Sommelier Association is the host.

After this… lets dream… European championship…

Q2. How do you see development/promotion of the sommelier profession in Serbia and world?

Attracting and keeping engaged and loyal sommeliers – members is crucial to the success of a associations. A great way to retain sommeliers and nurture his skills is to consistently and actively promote professional development activities.

Encouraging professional growth shows your team you care about their progress and their future, and it inspires loyalty in members.

We have three Level of education for professionals and one for the wine lovers. For each of them we developed book and trainings.

Serbian Sommelier Association create a customized development plan for the best sommeliers to support professional development during performance planning. We have schedule regular coaching or mentoring sessions to improve skills and knowledge and discuss progress and allow the sommeliers to ask questions.

At the world level we need to create serious promotions who we are and what we do. ASI diploma must be present to all big hotel company’s and to the best restaurants of the world.

Best sommelier of Cyprus in 2018 is Andreas Kyprianou

Andreas is in the wine business for fifteen years although he graduated in other field. He has his Bachelor degree in Investment and Finance at Baruch College in NY. After working for two years in USA on promotion of Greek wines he came back in Cyprus in 2005 and started his own importing company and wine shop Vino Cultura.

In 2011 he transformed the wine shop into the first multi-venue wines destination in Cyprus, with a wine bar, a wine shop and educational center under the same roof. Since than, wine list at VinoCultura has won award for “Best of Award of Excellence” from Wine Spectator and many awards as the “Best Wine List” and “Best Wine Bar” of Cyprus.

He passed Advanced examination at Court of master Sommeliers in 2018 and in the same year he won National Sommelier Competition in Cyprus.

We asked him a few questions about his first Champion title and future ideas, check what he answered to us:

Q1:  This is your first title of Best Sommelier of Cyprus. How do you feel?

Of course, I’m very excited for this title but, most of all, I’m thrilled to have the chance to represent my country at the next European Competition in 2020 which as we know will take place in Cyprus.

Q2: How do you think the title of Best Sommelier of Cyprus will change your life?

I think the journey of the next two and a half years – until the next European Competition – will be quite thrilling and full of new acquaintances and experiences. At a local scale, people are offering their help in order to prepare and train like never before. At an international scale, partners from around the globe cooperating with my company Vino Cultura, which is one of the premier wine importers in our market, are also eager to help in any way they can. This title fills me with persistence and more motivation to promote wine culture, to seek for the even better result in whatever I do regarding wine.

Q3: How is the profession of sommeliers in Cyprus? What can be improved?

I believe this is the perfect analogy of the chicken and the egg…there aren’t many sommelier jobs because there aren’t enough sommeliers or is it the other way around? I believe it’s the latter.

Things are progressing very fast since our market has only recently recovered from the financial meltdown of 2013 which was a major setback. Our tourism sector is booming right now and the new wave of tourists making their way to our island are more set in experimenting with the local wines-more than ever before.

We see a new wave of young professionals turning to wine, reaching abroad (the social media and technology has certainly helped) and most importantly educating themselves much more than before. Truth be told, when I started in the hospitality industry, some 20 years ago, it was much more difficult to explore wine. Let alone living in a small and isolated island with high tariffs on wine. The turning point was our inclusion in the European Union in 2004 and as I said the technology.

The next competition for the Best Sommelier of Europe in 2020 is the perfect opportunity for the hospitality and wine industry in Cyprus to evolve and showcase its achievements of the past 20 years.

Q4: You have a great knowledge about food and wine. What do you think you can do to promote your national beverages and gastronomy?

First of all, promoting a whole country, no matter how big or small, it is never a one man’s job. Things change in Cyprus and more and more people appreciate a lot of professions which were kind of unknown in the island. We all must take the common decision to advance, while at the same time we preserve and deepen our relation with tradition. That’s the inner meaning of culture and of all its products, like wine for instance.

New president in Monaco is Dominique Milardi

Dominique is in the hospitality business for a long time with very precise philosophy about wines.

He is member of several very influence associations in Monaco. Like Monaco Wine stewards Association, Monaco Slow Food International Association, Big golden Cordon and French cooking and many more…

He created Association of the Maitres d’Hotel of Cote d’Azur and Monaco and being a President for a several years.

He is a co-founder of the competition of the Best Maitres d’Hotel of the Luxury hotels of Cote d’ Azur and Monaco and co-founder od the “Attellet d’Or Association”.

  • 1st place of Trophee Jacquart of the Best Maitre d’Hotel Provence-Alpes-Cote d’ Azur 2000
  • 3rd place Trophee Jacquart of the Best Maitre d’Hotel, France

After numerous experiences in big Luxury hotels and restaurants he entered in 2005 as a Head Wine steward in the restaurant “Intempo” of the Meridien Beach Plaza in Monaco. He is a trainer for the world group Starwod and assures courses of oenology every week.

He is a Vice-president of the A.M.I.R.A.  and a technical committee of International competition of international wines “Women and Wines of the World”  and so much more!

Check here what he told us about his plans and visions:

Q1: What is your vision/plans in the future for Monaco Association of Sommeliers? 

  • To continue the good work done By Patrice Frank and Jean Pallanca the 2 past Presidents.
  • To promote and encourage our sommeliers Association By a good communication, Facebook, Instagram, website, newspaper…
  • To work with the others Association of sommeliers regional and International, in order To have more contacts and opportunity.
  • To help the Monaco Candidate By All the ways for the future issues, Best sommelier of the world in 2019 in Belgium and the others competitions like best sommelier of Europe etc.
  • To do some formations and Master Class, wine tasting, vineyards visits, in order To help all the sommeliers of out country To progress and .be open mind in their passion/work…

Q2. How do you see development/promotion of the sommelier profession in Monaco and world?

I think our noble profession is changing. Now we not only have to select wines, making a wine list, or selling wines. Our role is more and more dedicated to be Ambassador…
Ambassador of the place you work, Ambassador of the wines and winemakers. Ambassador of your Country…

Also it is very important to be passionate and open mind, to be a good technician is not enough anymore  to be representative, humble, and always keeping in mind that when you think you know, you realize that you know nothing…

Knowledge of the wines of all around the world is also very important, in this world economy…

I am convinced that our passion/profession is the best we can do in order to be in harmony with the other, and giving our modest contribution to build a safe and better world.

Be green, it’s a necessity, but not in a stupid way, using the technology which is very useful ONLY if necessary…

Having good sense, le the base!

Everybody can add his heart and passion, this is for sure the way I work.