American wins sommelier world cup in South Africa

20 October, 2010

Wines Of South Africa’s (WOSA) first Sommelier World Cup has been won by an American.

Christopher Bates prevailed over a 12-strong international field of hotel and bar sommeliers to be crowned the WOSA champion 2010.

Su Birch, WOSA chief executive, said: “We wanted to capitalise on the [recent] international focus on South Africa by creating a contest for professionals to test their understanding of South African wines.“

The finalists’ week-long visit to South Africa culminated in a written test, a blind tasting, and an on-stage role-play involving members of the seven-judge panel.

Birch said: “[The] contest created a great opportunity to expose an important group of opinion leaders to the diversity and excellence of South African wines.

“Many sommeliers play a key role in compiling wine lists for restaurants and hotels, and are in this respect, ideal ambassadors for us.”

The finalists had previously undertaken national-based examinations that assessed their understanding of South African wine styles.

Stefaan Camerlinck of Belgium finished second in the competition, while Veronique Rivest of Canada finished third.


Dominic Roskrow

It’s ‘up periscope’ for Irish distilleries

I know how wierd this might seem but I often think that the opening of a new distillery is like the launch of a new submarine. It is unveiled in all its pristine glory in a blaze of publicity and fanfare.

Click for more »