‘The Sommeliers’ announce their 2017 winners!

The Sommelier Collection knows which wines are "sexy"!

If you don’t trust the advice of wine makers or wine writers, maybe you should listen to sommeliers whose job it is to “pick and choose” what people like and what works best with what food! The Sommeliers Selection is the result of an annual wine competition with a difference: it is revolutionary as it is judged solely by top South African sommeliers.

With the rapid and exciting growth of both the food and wine industry in South Africa over the last 20 years, consumers are looking for experienced guidance when it comes to selecting wine. This competition does just that.

With categories such as “White: Fresh & Crunchy” or “Red: Voluptuous & Rich” or “Red: Elegant & Classy””, wines of different varieties, blends and pricing, but stylistically similar, are judged alongside each other. The panel of sommeliers then judges and chooses wines to match the various categories. The wines selected are also deemed exciting enough to fit an “ultimate” wine list.

The Sommeliers Selection panel members “blind” taste individually before discussing the wines and deciding if the wines fulfill the criteria of being placed on the Sommeliers Selection wine list. At the annual feedback session with the winning list, the panel discusses the entered wines, what they look for in a perfect wine list and which wines “wow” them, as well as the emphasis on the importance of judging wines for ideal pairing with food.

The Sommeliers Selection competition chairman and current board member of The South African Sommeliers Association, Joakim Hansi Blackadder, says: “Freshness, expression and elegance were attributes that stood out among this year’s winners at the Sommeliers Selection. The competition, now in its third year, has become one the most relevant and exciting competitions on the yearly calendar with its unique angle and approach. Lengthy and passionate discussions took place between the experienced sommeliers on the panel pertaining to the wines age-worthiness, suitability to food, and the overall value for money. At the end, all wines awarded and selected for the wine list was ratified by one final re-tasting by the chair and the two heads of panel. The resulting selection of awarded wines are truly some of the best in the country, and something we can all proudly stand behind. Bravo!”

For a complete list of this year's winning wines, visit http://www.thesommeliersselection.co.za/awards.html.

The Trade and Public tastings will take place in Johannesburg (Thursday, 28 September) and Cape Town (Wednesday, 5 October). For more information, visit www.thesommeliersselection.co.za, call 084 207 3820 or send an email to info@thesommeliersselection.co.za.