Cateys 2022: Wine and Spirit Ambassador Award: Jan Konetzki

05 July 2022 by
Cateys 2022: Wine and Spirit Ambassador Award: Jan Konetzki

Jan Konetzki, director of wine at the Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square, wins the Wine and Spirit Ambassador Award, sponsored by Matthew Clark Wholesale

Jan Konetzki has held the position of director of wine at the Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square since 2016. The reason Konetzki has won this prestigious Catey isn't just because of his deep knowledge, understanding and promotion of wines and Champagne, but because of his work to support the wine industry as a whole.

Konetzki is originally from Luneburg in north Germany and spent the early part of his career as a baker before indulging his passion for wine by training as a waiter and a commis sommelier. He began working in fine dining restaurants to develop his knowledge and experience in gastronomy and hospitality. In 2007 he moved to London to join Gordon Ramsay Holdings, progressing to the role of head sommelier within just one year of joining the flagship Restaurant Gordon Ramsay. In the same year, Konetzki took the Court of Master Sommeliers advanced certificate, which he passed with distinction.

After only five years at Ten Trinity Square, Konetzki has built up a nationwide reputation for its wine and drinks offering as well as the quality of the three sommelier teams. He oversees the wine programme for chef Anne-Sophie Pic's debut London restaurant, La Dame de Pic, as well as Asian restaurant Mei Ume, the Rotunda Bar & Lounge, and the Ten Trinity Square Private Club. He is also an ambassador for Chateau Latour and Artemis Domaines.

His passion for wine outside working hours knows no bounds. He co-organised and headlined hospitality festival PX+, an event designed to bring those working in the hospitality industry together to reflect and collaborate. And he has been a judge for a number of competitions such as UK Sommelier of the Year.

The Catey judges noted his energy and enthusiasm and his ability to make wine and spirits approachable for everyone. He is described as a forward-thinking sommelier, who progressively ignites change and works tirelessly to attract talent to hospitality by mentoring and supporting the next generation, using social media to engage his followers. Indeed, throughout the pandemic, Konetzki used his social media platforms to engage his peers, boosting morale, educating and informing his followers with Instagram Live sessions covering topics from wine and work as a sommelier to mental health.

He is also an ambassador and mentor for Be Inclusive Hospitality and part of the diversity and inclusion panel for the Association de la Sommellerie Internationale, working to break down barriers and open up the world of wine to all. Konetzki is an open member of the LGBTQ+ community and uses his voice to educate and be a positive role model by sharing his struggles, moments of wisdom and joy.

What the judges said

"Jan's energy for wine can be felt miles away. And when he is in the room, you won't miss him. His support for his colleagues and endless passion for advocating wines are second to none." – Sandia Chang

"Not only does Jan excel in his working life, he is also very busy outside of work, supporting the industry in multiple facets. Jan uses social media to promote and endorse the wine and sprits industry to positive effect." – Kevin McKee

The shortlist

  • Jan Konetzki, Four Seasons Hotel London at Ten Trinity Square
  • Frans Mortengren, Heritage Portfolio
  • Laure Patry, The Social Company

The judges

  • Nina Basset, chairperson, Gérard Basset Foundation
  • Sandia Chang, co-founder, Bubbledogs and Kitchen Table
  • Kevin McKee, UK director, Champagne Taittinger
  • Andrew McKenzie, managing director, the Vineyard
  • Xavier Rousset, owner, Blandford Comptoir
  • Rachel Webster, managing director, Wine & Spirit Education Trust
  • Eric Zwiebel, cellar master/sommelier, Summer Lodge Country House
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