Four sommeliers - one from Johannesburg and three form the Western Cape - will contest the finals of The Bollinger Exceptional Wine Service Award next month. They are:
Josephine Gutentoft, sommelier at Grande Roche Hotel and Restaurant, Paarl.
Wayne Kolevsohn, restaurant manager/sommelier at Le Quartier Francais,
Francis Krone, sommelier at Saxon Boutique Hotel, Johannesburg.
Joakim Hansi Blackadder (pictured above) GM/sommelier at The Roundhouse Restaurant, Camps Bay.
The organiser of event, Ginette de Fleuriot CWM, is impressed with the calibre of the finalists. “Now that we are at the business-end of the competition, it’s gratifying to have four such outstanding finalists coming to the fore. The final will be fiercely competitive, not least because we will have two women and two men, and two South Africans and two Swedes, fighting it out for this unique award.”
The final round of judging will take place on October 21 at The Twelve Apostles Hotel & Spa in Cape Town. The names of the winner and runner-up will be announced at 19h00 on November 11 at the Swartland Revolution, at The Royal Hotel, Riebeek Kasteel.
The judges are:
Mia Martensson: (judges chairperson) a Swedish-trained sommelier and current sales manager of The Winery of Good Hope.
Kent Scheermeyer: a German-trained sommelier and founder of KSconsult which services the hospitality industry in wine procurement, winelist design and training.
Neil Grant: Chairman of the South African Sommelier Association (SASA) and sommelier at Rust en Vrede Restaurant, Stellenbosch.
Ginette De Fleuriot CWM: Organiser of The Bollinger Exceptional Wine Service Award and on-consumption business development manager at Vinimark The Wine Company, co-sponsors of the award.
The winner of The Bollinger Exceptional Wine Service Award will earn a trip to the House of Bollinger Champagne in France. The prize includes the airfare and accommodation in France.
The finalists will be judged on wine and food service and will be tested on any of the following:
wine styles and terminology
wine label information
regions of origin
major international wine regions and their wines
identifying wines in a blind tasting
food and wine pairing
social skills and ability to interact with the patron.