TerraVina sommeliers' triumph

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  • Wednesday 17 November 2010

Laura Rhys and Laurent Richet of Hotel TerraVina have been named Master Sommeliers 2010.

Laura Rhys
Laura Rhys Laurent Richet

Images: Laura Rhys and Laurent Richet (holding trophy)

The title is prestigious: out of a total of 14 candidates going through the examination process only three were successful.

Richet was awarded the Laurent Perrier Grand Siecle Cup for passing all three parts of the exam at the first attempt, a feat which is hardly ever achieved, organisers say.

Laura Rhys is the second ever British female Master Sommelier since the qualification was established in 1969.

Hotel TerraVina is unique in being the only establishment in the UK to have three Master Sommeliers on its staff: Richet, Rhys and owner Gerard Basset.

Nina Basset, co-founder of Hotel TerraVina with Gerard Basset, said, ‘We are absolutely thrilled with both Laura and Laurent’s fantastic achievements. This is yet further testament to Gerard, my husband, as they have both been trained and nurtured by him and this yet again proves he is a mentor “extraordinaire”.’

Gerard Basset, who chairs the Regional France panel at the Decanter World Wine Awards, has won a plethora of awards including the World Sommelier Championships in Chile in April this year.

More recently he was presented with the 2010 Cateys Special Award for his contribution to the hospitality industry.

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