UK's Tim Hall takes runner up spot at European Champagne Ambassador's Competition

29 October 2013 by
UK's Tim Hall takes runner up spot at European Champagne Ambassador's Competition

The English representative at the European Champagne Ambassadors' Awards has narrowly missed out on the top accolade having been named runner up at the event which celebrates those who excel at Champagne training.

Tim Hall, director of Scala School of Wine, came second to Niek Beute of the Netherlands at the Comité Champagne organised competition. The Austrian candidate Christine Mary came third.

Halls achievement makes the UK, alongside Belgium, the most highly decorated country to take part in the competition, which is now in its ninth year.

The competition is open to those who are professionals in the training of wine in nine countries: Austria, Belgium, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Switzerland, the Netherlands, and the United Kingdom.

Having won their national competition, each finalist spent a week together in Champagne, visiting Champagne houses and learning more about the winegrowers and the terroir. They then gave a presentation and conducted a tasting related to this year's theme: ‘The singular nature of the Champagne region.'

Hall said: "After winning the UK final, the week in Champagne for the European final was just about the most stimulating and high quality professional experience for me ever. The organisation was superb, there were constant opportunities to see and talk at length with producers big and small and Comité Champagne members, who gave so much of their time.

"The singularity of champagne for me is the unique taste profile. It's unlike any other wine in the world. It's all about freshness, fragrance and flavour."

Hall added that operators should pay more attention to Champagne sales and to promote its individuality.

"Restaurants rely on Champagne's social singularity," he said. "It has achieved an identity and meaning for people throughout the world in terms of being associated with great moments. No other wine has achieved that charisma.

"But that means it's not promoted enough. Hospitality thinks it sells itself but it doesn't. Prosecco has achieved a social cache. It has jumped into a space that Champagne once occupied. The champagne message still needs to be carried to the consumers' lips."

Director of the Champagne Bureau UK director Françoise Peretti said: "Once again, the UK has demonstrated the excellence of its wine education which is not only taught by expert and engaging educators in our country but is exported all over the world. 2014 will mark the 10th anniversary of these inspiring awards and we look forward to celebrating, hopefully with more UK wins."

Clement Robert crowned Moët Sommelier of the Year 2013 >>

TagsAlcohol and Awards
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