They came, they poured and they conquered! Young suave sommeliers from India competing in the eighth edition of Indian Sommelier Championship (ISC) served the reds, whites and the sparklings with expected élan during the final round of the competition that saw the culmination of several weeks of hard work on the sommellerie front. This year too, I had the opportunity to witness the final round amidst the privilege of sipping the same wines in tandem with the finalists on stage and chatting them up while they waited their turn on the rostrum.
An annual feature, the ISC has been conducted since 2008 under the aegis of Wi-Not Beverage Solutions Private Ltd- a beverages consultancy based in New Delhi. The contest involves grooming and orienting the candidates towards the championship followed by preliminary rounds and eventually the grand finale where India’s best sommeliers slug it out for the top positions. The winners, apart from getting immense recognition in the world of wine, get further opportunities in the form of visits to international vineyards, one-on-one sessions with celebrated winemakers and likewise.
As I have already dwelled on the conduct aspects of the championship in one of my earlier posts, this time I thought it would be good idea to present a little more about the winners than meets the arclights. Hence I got in touch with them again (as winners were not announced in the finale but a separate gala dinner that didn’t see my presence- a fact that I rued last year too) and they came out whole heartedly with the details. So here’s introducing the mint fresh Indian Sommelier Champs: (Note- you can right click and save/share the respective images as you may please)
While Harish Acharekar looks forward to an all expenses paid trip to the grand Austrian wine fair Vie Vinum 2016- an award bestowed by the Austrian Wine Marketing Board (AWMB), Pratik Angre will take off for Spain to visit the Gramona Cava facility. Lalit Rane gets his share of the winners’ pie with exclusive visits and one-on-one sessions with the winemakers at the Fratelli and York wineries in India.
Here’s wishing the Champion Sommeliers joyous barrels and exulting acres in their journey of passion!