THE BEST UK SOMMELIER 2018 IS JULIEN SARRASIN!!
FIRST RUNNER UP NICOLAS PLANTY, SECOND RUNNER UP NOEMIE FAVRAT
This year at the Institute of Directors in Pall Mall the UK Sommelier Association held The Best UK Sommelier 2018, Villa Sandi Award and Walkaround Tasting, hosted by the TV presenter Joe Fattorini, with the support of the UKSA President Andrea Rinaldi, and the Vice President Federica Zanghirella
The event culminated in the announcement of the UK’s Best Sommelier Julien Sarrasin, Head Sommelier at Club Gascon. First runner up Nicolas Planty, Sommelier at ISS, and first woman on stage, second runner up Noemie Favrat, Sommelier at The Bleeding Heart.
The first morning session, saw the Sommeliers taking part in a first round written exam, blind wine tasting and wine pairing, supervised by members of Italian Sommelier Association (AIS). From this, the contestants were whittled down to three semi-finalists.
In the afternoon, the three semi-finalists were asked to perform on stage the best service possible, to role-playing customers, made up of the chief of Valpolicella Consortium Olga Bussinello, and the Champagne specialist and educator Simon Stockton.
The finalists performance included blind wine and spirit tasting, service, bottle opening, decanting, wine and food pairing and communication test.
Judging the performance Masters of Wine, journalists, wine experts and AIS board members including Christopher Walkey, David Bird, Anthony Rose, Christopher Cooper and Luca Martini. Part of the panel Flavio Geretto and Diva Moretti Polegato, export manager and owner of Villa Sandi, main sponsor of the competition.
The Best UK Sommelier 2018, Villa Sandi Award pays homage to the style, elegance and skills of this passion fuelled profession, and has been designed to celebrate the wine professionals within the hospitality industry and their crucial role in the business.