Nordic Sommelier Open Workshop 2012

First of all, I would like to thank the Swedish Sommelier Guild – Sveriges Sommeliergille – for the opportunity to participate in an excellent workshop in Stockholm.

What I saw and experienced there set the bar very high for other sommelier associations in terms of organizing an event for learning, teaching each-other and motivating younger generation wine professionals.

It all began for me when I met a young gentleman named Totte Steneby during the “Bollinger Norsk Vinkelnesmesterskap & Laroche Young Sommelier 2012” competition in Oslo. It was an honor to get acquainted with him and come in contact with someone among the Swedish sommeliers.

Due to some difficulties and lack of activity in the Swedish Sommelier Association, I’m sure that I am not the only one who thought: What’s going on in Sweden? And no-one knew exactly for quite some time…

But meeting Totte was a very inspiring moment because then I heard for the first time about Sveriges Sommeliergille – a new group of active sommeliers in Sweden.

And, as a 8-month-old organization, they managed to create an amazing workshop which was held on the 8th of June in the heart of Stockholm at this very interesting place called Gondolens Gastronomi.

The main goal of it was to convene the members and other active sommeliers to teach and learn from each other. In a very relaxed atmosphere we went through several standard situations and tasks that are quite common in sommelier competitions. I learned many things, got plenty of ideas, but most importantly I took in courage to better cope with the spotlight.

Besides me, the Guild invited a few other foreign guests as well. One of them was my friend from Norway – Magnus Egerdahl Nørsett – who won 1st place in Laroche Young Sommelier 2012.

During the training session, we had a great lunch prepared by Klas Lindberg who was named “Swedish Chef of the Year 2012”. With the best gourmet-lunch I have ever had we could sip some Taittinger Brut Reserve while enjoying a scenic view of Stockholm city.

The training consisted mainly of decanting session, food & wine pairing and wine description. After each session we received constructive criticism through comments by leading teachers and had an open discussion about what we did or did not do correctly, or did differently.

Before dinner, we had a few drinks in Svartengrens bar – I would recommend to anyone to stop by. It is a nice, stylish place with a young city vibe. Merci beaucoup for the Singapore Sling!

Dinner was in Rolfs Kök, Tegnérgatan 41 – very enjoyable and quiet district – and the food was beyond words! For the starter we had white asparagus with västerbottens cheese and macadamia nuts. And pork confit (from the farm of Rocklunda) with cabbage, beer braised shallots & roasted garlic for the main course. Like WOW!

Not to mention the wines: 2007 Riesling, G.G, Ganshorn Magnum and 2007 Bachelet´s Charmes Chambertin.

Pictures done by Christian Gustavsson: Nordic Sommelier Open Workshop

Thank you again Sverige Sommeliergille and I hope to see you very soon. Jonas and Totte, I wish you good luck!

With best regards,

Kristina Ratso

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