WORLD’S NUMBER ONE SOMMELIER TO LAUNCH 2017 AWARD
“The Bellavita Best UK Sommelier Villa Sandi Award organised by UK Sommelier Association and AIS is about Enthusiasm, Knowledge and Business.” – Luca Martini
This year’s Bellavita Best UK Sommelier – Villa Sandi Award organised by UK Sommelier Association and AIS will be launched by the world’s top sommelier Luca Martini. Luca is currently Head Sommelier at ‘Osteria Da Giovanna’, in his hometown of Arezzo in Eastern Tuscany and a respected wine consultant. He began his training at the Pegligrino Artusi Institute in Chianciano before gaining experience in the UK. First at Café Restaurant Nicolay in Leicester and then Caviar House in London; and Gary Rhodes’ Michelin star restaurant City Rhodes as Chief Sommelier. He has also actively worked alongside wine expert Steven Spurrier at respected private members club – Boodle’s – where he was responsible for a cellar of over 55,000 labels of bespoke wine. An award-winning sommelier Luca has already won the title of the best sommelier in Tuscany for 2007, the 2nd place winner in Italy for 2008, which was topped by the best Italian sommelier award in 2009; before he became the best sommelier in the world, an honour he has held onto since 2013.
ABOUT THE AWARDS
The Bellavita Best UK Sommelier – Villa Sandi Award is a yearly honour presented by the UK Sommelier Association (UKSA) / Club AIS London every year. Entrants from the industry who demonstrate a key awareness of wines from sommeliers, maîtres, restaurateurs, wine merchants, wine writers and teachers that have actively worked in their field for at least one year are invited to apply for the opportunity to participate. After a vigorous screening period, the competition’s final heat will take place in front of an audience and elected jury at the Bellavita Theatre. The three successful competitors will be encouraged to take part in a two-part exam which will test their wine tasting skills and demonstrate their competency in identifying key characteristics, regional backgrounds and producer information. Next, a service test will encourage them to engage directly with their audience, pairing complimentary food and drink solutions to prospective dinners and their overall delivery, which dictates their customers’ dining experience. After their work is completed the jury will individually assess each individual and present the results.
The title winner will be awarded as The Best Sommelier UK 2017 with the qualification of Second Prize in the competition for “The Best Sommelier UK 2017” and the diploma Third Prize in the competition for “The Best Sommelier UK 2017” for the third place winner. Each finalist will be awarded prestigious prizes offered by leading companies in wine and food industry. The event is sponsored by Villa Sandi, producers of premium prosecco. Learn about the previous winners by year here:
Vincenzo Arnese from Dinner by Heston Blumenthal
Matteo Montone from Locanda Locatelli
ABOUT VILLA SANDI
Family-owned and run by the Moretti Polegato family, Villa Sandi is located in one of the most renowned wine region in Italy, the Prosecco area and is indeed a leader producer having reached over 90 Countries in the world. The winery has had a major role in settig the pace for Prosecco reputation as a wine and a production area while keeping to extreme high quality and commitment to environment safeguard which have resulted into having part of the winery estates certified as ” Biodiversity Friend “.
Villa Sandi Estates encompass all the Prosecco appellations from the DOC area to the Asolo DOCG hills to the traditional Conegliano-Valdobbiadene DOCG steep hills and gentle slopes to the special cru of Cartizze in Valdobbiadene. Awards like Tre Bicchieri Gambero Rosso , being selected for Opera Wine with Wine Spectator make Villa Sandi icon of a whole area , symbol of Italian life style.
ABOUT THE UK SOMMELIER ASSOCIATIONFounded in 2005, the UKSA has actively worked in London to provide comprehensive professional sommelier courses for the UK, in conjunction with the Italian Sommelier Association (AIS), which has worked since 1965 to demonstrate an awareness of Italian wines. It is chaired by respected professionals Andrea Rinaldi and Federica Zanghirella – who between them both have thirty years experience within the industry. Their series of five-month courses provide enrollees with a fully-recognised international diploma and an extensive opportunity to discover the best wine, beers, spirits and sake; and advanced food and wine combinations.