The New Zealand Sommit Scholarship programme gives sommeliers the chance to immerse themselves in all things New Zealand wine. After the UK and Ireland heat the final three have been chosen to take part in the Sommit 17 programme of events in New Zealand.
Chance for sommeliers to dive head first in to an educational wine trip of New Zealand.
The winning sommeliers are:
• Julie Dupouy (pictured) – The Greenhouse Restaurant, Dublin
• James Payne – Sandeman’s Restaurant at Fonab Castle Hotel, Scotland
• Melody Wong – Dinner by Heston Blumenthal, London
They will each now take part in one of two Sommits taking place in New Zealand between January 26 and February 6 2017 in New Zealand. The events are being hosted by New Zealand-based Master Sommelier, Cameron Douglas, and Master of Wine, Stephen Wong, and will give them a chance to really explore all aspects of New Zealand wine.
The first Sommit will be held on Waiheke Island, known as the ‘Island of wine’, situated in Auckland’s Hauraki Gulf. The sommeliers will then attend the Aromatics Symposium in Nelson, before moving on to the Pinot Noir NZ 2017 in Wellington, where leading figures from around the world will descend to explore the world of Pinot Noir.
The second Sommit will take place in Wairarapa, following Pinot2017, and is preceded by a Classic Reds Symposium, held in Hawke’s Bay, featuring spotlights on Syrah, Cabernet and Merlot.
Chris Stroud, marketing manager for Europe for New Zealand Winegrowers, said: “Following the inaugural Sommit in 2016, New Zealand Winegrowers extended the scholarship to sommeliers working in the UK and Ireland. We had a huge number of high quality applicants, but the three selected stood out as being extremely passionate, and eager to immerse themselves in the world of New Zealand wine.”
He added: “We are confident that Julie, James and Melody will be strong, influential and enthusiastic ambassadors for New Zealand wine in the UK and Ireland.”