Academy of Food & Wine names UK Sommelier of the Year

03 April 2008 by
Academy of Food & Wine names UK Sommelier of the Year

Gearoid Devaney from Tom Aikens' Michelin-starred restaurant in London has been named the Academy of Food & Wine's UK Sommelier of the Year 2008.

Now in its 28th year, the competition, which took place last night, saw Devaney compete against other finalists Isa Bal from Heston Blumenthal's Fat Duck in Bray, Berkshire, and Cyril Thevenet of Hotel du Vin, in front of a live audience.

Tasks included blind tasting, wine and food recommendations, correcting errors on a wine list and pouring a magnum of Champagne into 16 glasses ensuring that each glass was equal, no glass was revisited, nothing was spilt and the bottle ended up empty.

Judges included Matt Wilkin, director of the Academy of Food & Wine; 2006 winner Claire Thevenot, group sommelier coach at Malmaison Group; and chief judge Gerard Basset.

Basset praised the high standard of this year's competitors.

"The competition involves the best sommeliers in the country. Standards are improving all the time as restaurants are putting more emphasis on wines and the sommeliers are expected to know far more than they ever did," he said.

Champagnes Piper-Heidsieck and Charlies Heidsieck have been announced as competition sponsors for three years from 2009.

Gerard and Nina Basset opens latest venture Hotel TerraVina >>

Hotel du Vin's Claire Thevenot named sommelier of the year 2006 >>

Academy of Food & Wine website >>

Malmaison and Hotel du Vin annual Corkers awards >>

By Kerstin Kühn

E-mail your comments to Kerstin Kühn here.

The Caterer Blog]( Catch up with more news and gossip on the Caterer Blog here
[Newsletters For the latest hospitality news, sign up for our e-mail newsletters.
The Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email

Start the working day with The Caterer’s free breakfast briefing email

Sign Up and manage your preferences below

Check mark icon
Thank you

You have successfully signed up for the Caterer Breakfast Briefing Email and will hear from us soon!

Jacobs Media Group is honoured to be the recipient of the 2020 Queen's Award for Enterprise.

The highest official awards for UK businesses since being established by royal warrant in 1965. Read more.


Ad Blocker detected

We have noticed you are using an adblocker and – although we support freedom of choice – we would like to ask you to enable ads on our site. They are an important revenue source which supports free access of our website's content, especially during the COVID-19 crisis.

trade tracker pixel tracking