The SASA Candidate for SA makes Top 15 Somm of the world

Sunday, 17 April, 2016
Jean Vincent Ridon
Gareth Ferreira took top honours at the first Best Sommelier in South Africa in January, and is now representing South Africa at the World Best Sommelier competition in Mendoza, Argentina. Jean Vincent Ridon reports for wine.co.za

For its first participation at the Best Sommelier of the World, the South African candidate along with two Sommeliers from Japan, two from Sweden, and the representatives of Argentina, Latvia, Denmark, Norway, Finland, France, Russia, Poland, Ireland and Canada are the runners-up for the semi-final of the A.S.I. Best Sommelier of the World 2016.

The 15 contenders that will compete to secure a place in the final are Paz Levinson, Argentina, Robert Anderssen, Sweden, Christian Jacobsen, Denmark, Heidi Makinen, Finland, Piotr Pietras, Polond, Rassavkin Alexander, Russia, Henrik Dalh Johansen, Norway, Gareth Ferreira, South Africa, Hiroshi Hishida, Japan, David Biraud, Francie, Elyse Lambert, Canada, Julie Dupouy, Irland, Raimonds Tomsons, Latvia, Satoru Mori, Japan, Arvia Rosengren, Sweden.

All 61 international candidates participated on Saturday 16th April in the first set of examinations to be one of the 15 runners-up of the Concours A.S.I. du Meilleur Sommelier du Monde 2016. The participants took part on different tests and competitions to prove their knowledge and ability in fields such as wine service, wine tasting, viticulture, gastronomy, viticulture geography, winemaking process and consumption of the world most diverse drinks.

The chairman of the South African Sommeliers Association, Higgo Jacobs, declares: "The establishment of the South African Sommeliers Association as recently as in 2011 was done for a variety of reasons, and with a real team effort with invaluable contributions from people too many to name here. One of the reasons was certainly to increase our presence on the world platform and to join the international community of sommeliers. Participating in the ASI Mejor Sommelier Del Mundo 2016 in Mendoza is a victory for us in own right. Having our candidate, Gareth Ferreira on the platform tonight as one of the 15 semi-finalists out of the top 61 contestants from all over the world is euphoric. SASA's work is just beginning, with so much more to be done, but tonight we celebrate a milestone."

The Semi finals results will be announced on Tuesday the 19th April, just before the Finale in Mendoza. The Top three sommeliers will compete to win the ultimate title that is only awarded every three years.

Now there is a real chance the trophy comes to South Africa.

Higgo and Gareth celebrating
Higgo and Gareth celebrating

15 Semi-finalists
15 Semi-finalists

All the Somms participating
All the Somms participating

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