UK Champagne experts fought it out last Wednesday night at the UK leg of the Champagne Ambassadors’ Award.

This year’s winner is Carol Whitehead, a Wine and Spirits Education Trust tutor from Wiltshire, who impressed the judges with her ability to describe Champagne to a wider audience.

The competition, which is in its second year, has been launched by the CIVC (Comité Interprofessionnel du Vin de Champagne) to recognise the best Champagne teachers and lecturers in Europe.

Held at London’s Dorchester hotel, each of the four UK candidates had to carry out a tasting and give a lecture on the subject of terroir before the panel of five eminent judges.

The awards, the CIVC said, acknowledge ‘the work of all those who train future sommeliers but also those who work towards a better knowledge of Champagne.’

Whitehead will go on to compete against seven European finalists from Germany, Holland, France, Spain, Italy, Switzerland, and Belgium.

The 2006 European Ambassadors’ Award starts on 16 October in Epernay and ends on 20 October with the crowning of the ‘Grand Prix of Champagne Ambassadors.’

Written by Libby Banks