Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Veronique Rivest

I already introduced to one leading lady in the Canadian Sommelier scene, so it is now time to meet another :-) Please meet Top Sommelier Veronique Rivest. Veronique has a degree in German & Spanish (Modern Languages & Literature)and an MBA in International trade and yet she chose to devote her life to wine :-) the least you can say is that she is very devoted as next to gaining the title of Best sommelier of Canada (2 times 2006 & 2012)) and Best Sommelier of the Americas 2012, she became the 2nd Best Sommelier of the World in 2013 (Paolo Basso won that year and our Belgian friend Aristide Spies became 3rd)... not bad for an autodidact I'd say?! After becoming a certified sommelier at th

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Gérard Garroy

Our next sommelier to put in the spotlight is again on of our very own Belgian top sommeliers who won the title of Best sommelier of Belgium in 1989 and has been a person many look up to ever since! Please meet Gérard Garroy or Gégé for the friends :-) I only met Gérard a few years ago during a lunch at restaurant Pilori à Ecaussinnes. I might have only been a few years ago but it is a day I will never forget!! I was fortunate enough to sit at the same table as Gérard and Michel de Muynck… I think I’ve never laughed as much :-) and we obviously also tasted some wonderful wines!! Our friend Gérard is a classical trained sommelier who graduated at the ITCF d'Hôtellerie de Spa and specialized

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Đurđa Katić

The following sommelier I want to introduce to you is Serbian top sommelier Đurđa Katić. Đurđa proves once again that the world of sommeliers is not only a ‘male’ world, but that more women are finding their way to this wonderful job. Technically speaking they are also better sommeliers as they have a better smell and tasting pallet. What makes Serbia extra special for us in Belgium (especially in the sommelier world) is that this is where we got elected to host the 2019 ASI Sommelier World Championships :-) Already at young age Đurđa came in contact with wine at her grandfather’s Dalmatian vineyard where she used to help out a lot (a highlight during the many years of war in the area). You

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Ferran Centelles

Our following sommelier to put in the spotlight is Ferran Centelles who has worked as head-sommelier (for 13 years) for the most well known, looked up to and talked about restaurant from the entire world (even years after it was closed) aka elBulli. After his studies at cookery school and a year at viticulture school Ferran quite quickly started working for elBulli as stagier during the summers and eventually as head-sommelier. Due to the fact elBulli was only open for 6months a year, Ferran had losts of time to travel around and get educated himself even more in wine. When elBulli closed a few years ago Ferran was in charge of selling the contents of elBulli's cellar at Sotheby's sales in

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Steven Wullaert

I can’t believe that I’m already sharing my 59th interview from a top sommelier and there are still many more to come. I’m not a sommelier myself, but to my opinion sommeliers are as important as chefs in a restaurant for giving guests an unforgettable experience!! Therefore they deserve the same amount of attention and it is our duty as sommeliers guild to give them this attention . The following sommelier I wish to introduce to you is one of our own Belgian top sommeliers, Steven Wullaert. I know Steven a while now and I will never forget the first time we met :-) as it was some years ago when having dinner at restaurant Nuance** where Steven is head-sommelier. At the end of our meal Ste

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Randy Mays

To put the following sommelier in the spotlight we are taking you to Turkey, please let me introduce to you mister Randolph ‘Randy’ Mays. As many amongst you might notice, ‘Randolph’ is not your average Turkish name :-) Randy is actually an American that already lives and works in Turkey for 27 years. Something that might also surprise you is the fact that he obtained a diploma in architecture at the Pratt Institute in NYC and additional Master diploma at the prestigious Columbia University and has already lived in 3 continents… but it seems that Turkey has something other countries didn’t have for him to stay there all these years. What led him to Turkey we will never know (not love, I was

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Ricardo Grellet

For our next sommelier we're staying in Latin -America, but this time no lady sommelier :-) Please meet Chilean top sommelier Ricardo Grellet Ricardo is a classical trained (meaning he did hotel management school) sommelier that crossed the Ocean after finishing his studies to follow a specialization course in accommodation and catering at the official tourism school in Madrid. As his love for wine and his country was too big he returned to Chile to get a degree in ‘vino Chileno’ at the Pontificia Universidad Católica de Chile and a diploma from WSET Intermediate and advanced courses. I’m not surprised that Ricardo is a well respected man/sommelier in Chile as he has done so much to lift up

Time to put the sommeliers in the spotlight: Paz Levinson

I've interviewed the 3rd and 5th best sommelier (female) of the world, so now I can only keep add more top lady sommeliers :-) This time I honored to introduce to you Paz Levinson who was the 4th best sommelier during the ASI Sommelier World championships in Mendoza (2016). Paz was born in Argentina and has also finished her studies as Professor in Literature in Argentina . You might think that with studies like that you'd be teaching at university, but the heart wants what the heart wants . Her love for wine too big for her to ignore it... parallel with her 'regular' studies she also followed a 2 year course for sommelier.... As she lived in Argentina, it won't surprise you that her firs

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