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"No other competition caters specifically to what the on-premise is looking for in a restaurant wine list" - Cami Lehmann, Maggiano’s Little Italy, TX
Every year, some of the country’s best sommeliers, Master Sommeliers, Masters of Wine, wine buyers, and other industry experts gather to taste wines from around the world. This year, the annual Sommeliers Choice Awards will take place in San Francisco on May 16, 2022. The wines shall be blind-tasted by the best wine talent out there and will be awarded their deserving spot on the winners’ list.
For a wine brand, getting onto a restaurant’s wine list or a retail store’s shelf and retaining their spot there is the most important thing; and is exactly what the Sommeliers Choice Awards aids in.
The top 100 scoring wines will be added to the Top 100 On-Premise wine list creating a benchmark for wine buyers across the country.
Winners will also be showcased on Sommelier Business, the leading online media asset for Sommeliers.
The Sommeliers Choice Awards’ judging process is carefully crafted to shine the spotlight on those wine brands that deserve a spot on a restaurant/bar’s wine list, and retail stores.
While the emphasis is on quality, like most wine competitions, the Sommeliers Choice Awards also judges on four other parameters, namely, food pairing ability, typicity, value, and packaging. In short, the competition focuses on those things that drinkers look at before choosing a wine.
Taking the drinker’s likes into consideration, the food pairing ability accounts for how well the wine pairs with different cuisines, dishes, and how versatile it is. The typicity of the wine focuses on how well it represents its origins, while the quality measures the wine by its taste, body, and mouthfeel. Then comes the value, which is awarded based on the price of the wine, with an emphasis on how well the quality matches its price tag. Lastly, the Sommeliers Choice Awards puts an emphasis on the packaging of the wine, keeping in mind that most of the time, a consumer’s first interaction with a bottle is through its packaging and label.
Sommeliers Choice Awards Judges enter the scores in the judging portal.
All wines entered are scored out of a 100, and those that are likely to score between 96-100 points are deemed as outstanding, taking home a Double Gold medal. Wines that score between 90-95 receive a Gold Medal, while those that receive anything within 80-89 are given a Silver. Those that are placed within the numbers of 70-79 are awarded a Bronze.
Apart from the staple medals, the Sommeliers Choice Awards also recognizes wines for their excellence in separate categories, and awards these wines with titles like ‘Wine of the Year’, ‘Winery of the Year’, ‘White Wine of the Year by Glass’, ‘Best Package of the Year’ and many more.
The judging panel at the Sommeliers Choice Awards is one that comprises some of the best names in the American wine industry, from establishments such as Crenn Dining Group, The French Laundry, Treasury Wine Estates, Four Seasons, and many more.
These judges come with years of experience and a special love for the trade. They’re also heavily involved in the day-to-day decision-making for their establishments when it comes to wine. The 2021 judging panel boasted 20 Master Sommeliers coming together under one roof to taste the best wines there are.
Blind-tasting phase at the previous Sommeliers Choice Awards.
Submission Closes - April 20, 2022
Warehouse Closes - April 24, 2022
Judging Day - May 16, 2022
Winners Announced - May 31, 2022
Regular Pricing - $120 per wine (quantity discount available when you enter more)
Wine brands now have an opportunity to grow their business and gain the attention of master sommeliers, sommeliers, wine buyers, wine directors and influencers within the U.S. on-premise industry.
Time to submit your wines in the 2022 Sommeliers Choice Awards. Submission deadline is April 20. Enter now and ship your samples.