After the dust cleared from the battle royale among the U.K.’s 12 most highly respected sommeliers, Restaurant Gordon Ramsay’s Jan Konetzki was named the victor by the Academy of Food and Wine Service.
The competition took place at London’s International Wine Fair on May 23. Competitors were judged by leading industry experts on their service skill, ability to manage staff and deal with customers under pressure. Finalists (including Konetzki and the two other finalists from Restaurant Sat Bains and Medlar Restaurant in London) were tested on their wine and drink knowledge. The finalists competed in blind taste-testing and corrected errors on wine lists and were asked to complete the perfect champagne pour (where a magnum of Champagne was poured equally into 16 glasses, without returning to any of them.)
After all was said and done, Konetski was named the winner. This was Konetski’s fourth time being in the semi-finals, but his first time sweeping the competition.
Restaurant Gordon Ramsay is the world famous chef’s three Michelin starred establishment in London, where award-winning head chef Claire Smyth has been at the helm since 2002. Many of Konetski’s coworkers (including Managing Director of Gordon Ramsay Holdings, Stuart Gilles) expressed how proud they were of the victory.
Konetski will hold the title of Moët UK Sommelier of the Year 2012 until next year’s competition.