See below who has won the Moët UK sommelier of the year 2016 competition, announced in London this week following a tense final.
Terry Kandylis, originally from Greece and working at 67 Pall Mall in London, has won the Moët UK sommelier of the year 2016 title after beating 11 other hopefuls in a fraught final at the Mandarin Oriental hotel in London’s Mayfair district.
Kandylis went into a run-off against two other sommeliers in the grand final, during which the contestants had to spot errors on a wine list, deal with awkward customers and pour a magnum of Champagne equally into 16 glasses without stopping.
In second place was Jess Kildetoft, of Mash in London, and in third place was Olivier Marie, of Coq d’Argent.
‘It feels incredible,’ Kandylis told Decanter.com after winning the prize, which includes a Jeroboam of Moët & Chandon with a gold sleeve.
Sommelier colleagues were quick to congratulate Kandylis and all finalists on social media.
Gérard Basset OBW MW MS, winner of the best sommelier in the world competition in 2010, is chair of the judging panel. Basset is also guest vice-chair of the Decanter World Wine Awards (DWWA).
The winner will benefit from mentoring programme and an all-expenses-paid educational trip to one of Europe’s top vineyards provided by UK distributor Matthew Clark, owned by Conviviality Retail. Prizes also include an engraved Riedel decanter and a collection of Riedel glasses.
The Moët UK Sommelier of the Year 2016 is also supported by AdVini, BaxterStorey, Hildon, Matthew Clark and Winterhalter. Now in their 37th year, the awards are run by the Academy of the Food and Wine Service (AFWS) and The Caterer, and are recognised by the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale (ASI).
The full list of Moët UK Sommelier of the Year 2016 finalists:
Scotland Regional Final Winner: Ladislav Basta, head sommelier, The Kitchin
North of England Regional Final Winner: Tamas Czinki, head sommelier, Northcote
West of England Regional Final Winner: Christopher Parker, assistant head sommelier, Lime Wood
London Regional Final A winner: Serdar Balkaya, head sommelier, Royal Automobile Club
London Regional Final B winner: Mathias Camilleri, head sommelier, The Five Fields Restaurant
Regional finals runners-up:
Remi Fischer, head sommelier, Old Course Hotel
Terry Kandylis, head sommelier, 67 Pall Mall
Jess Kildetoft, head sommelier, Mash London
Olivier Marie, head sommelier, Coq d’Argent
Petri Pentikainen, sommelier & assistant restaurant manager, The Three Chimneys Restaurant
Neils Sluiman, assistant head sommelier, Restaurant Sat Bains
Chaîne des Rôtisseurs Young Sommelier Competition winner: Romain Bourger, head sommelier, The Vineyard at Stockcross
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