Fifteen Master Sommeliers to visit Argentina in February

News / Outstanding / WofA / 14 January, 2019

By: Joaquín Hidalgo

In February, as guests of Wines of Argentina, some of the heavy weights of the sommellerie world will arrive in our country: fifteen Master Sommeliers will visit Mendoza and Salta and attend a dozen seminars on wine from these lands.

In accordance with the program which started in 2018 with the nearly 50 Masters of Wine trip to Argentina, this year WofA has invited the Court of Master Sommeliers. It will be a journey of discovery with a complete immersion of our wines. Between February 23 and March 2, these prestigious specialists will tour wineries, taste wines and attend talks given by the main referents of the sector. The objective is to conquer their palates and feed their curiosity about Argentine viticulture so that they can become our ambassadors.

Who are the guests?

Founded in 1969, when the first exam was taken in London, the Court of Master Sommeliers forms a worldwide elite of the most recognised and accredited professionals: to date, only 236 hold the title of Master Sommelier (the distinctive acronym after their names is MS). They are, says Andrés Rosberg, President of the International Association of Sommeliers, “the haute couture of wines”.

They look after the wine lists of the most prestigious restaurants in the world, buy wines for select chains and combine the task of service with teaching in almost all cases. They are therefore, key figures in WofA’s strategy to position Argentine wine.

“One of the themes that we are working hard on is that of the opinion makers. Just as the Masters of Wine were the institution chosen in 2018, this year we plan to work on the relationship with the Court of Master Sommeliers. It is very important, to position Argentine wine in the world, to reach those prestigious places where the Master Sommeliers perform. Therefore, this trip represents a great opportunity for the wine industry as a whole”, explained Alberto Arizu, President of WofA.

These experts work mainly in the United States and Europe. Some names that stand out are Frank Kämmer, a journalist based in Germany; Bryan Dawes, a member of the court committee and educator, based in the United Kingdom; Sean Razee, Director of D&E Fine Wine Group in the United States; Alex La Prat, owner of Atrium Dumbo, United States; and Nicolas Clerc, Brand Ambassador and Key Account Manager of Armit Wines, as well as a board member of the Court of Master Sommeliers, based in the United Kingdom.

For Andrés Rosberg, sommelier and President of the ASI, “the visit of this group represents an enormous opportunity for our viticulture. It always seemed to me that the world of wine is a bit like fashion, in which big brands develop by showing very special dresses in some fashion shows, and then sell jeans and shirts on a daily basis. Our catwalks, of course, are the tables of the great restaurants of the world. The sommeliers of these restaurants are our best allies,” he says.

During the trip, the MS will have the opportunity to taste more than three hundred wines over twelve seminars, covering the most important issues of the industry. From a seminar on the ABC of our country and its legislation to others on the formation of the most important geographical indications (GI) of the Uco Valley, the Calchaquíes Valleys and Patagonia. Also, talks about the revolution of whites in Argentina and some more with insight on sparkling wines, Cabernet Sauvignon & Franc and many other outstanding wines of our terroirs.

“For the realisation of this trip, WofA members are making a great effort that, in short, will be positive for the entire Argentine wine industry. We believe that an investment in knowledge is the way and we do not doubt that this visit will bring great benefits for the wineries of our country, as well as the local sommellerie, considering this action is also supported by the Argentine Sommeliers Association,” said the President of WofA.

Just as haute couture and prêt-à-porter go hand in hand, the world’s great restaurants are a fundamental tool to ensure the image of Argentine wine continues to grow day by day. This trip is a golden opportunity to show them off to the world, as well as the continuing work of educators in the main markets of the globe, which is bearing great fruit.

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Joaquín Hidalgo
Joaquín Hidalgo
Mendocino de nacimiento (1978), se recibió en el Liceo Agrícola como enólogo en la promoción 1996. Al año siguiente, se inscribió en periodismo en la Universidad Nacional de La Plata, de donde egresó en 2002. Desde entonces vive en Buenos Aires donde construyó una lar- ga carrera combinando sus dos pasiones: la escritura y los vinos. Ha trabajado en casi todos los medios que le dieron co- bertura al tema. Desde el Country Herald a la Revista del Club del Vino, en los que escribió sus primeras notas firmadas, a Playboy, Revista JOY y La Mañana de Neu- quén, diario del que sigue siendo columnista dominical desde 2007. Colaboró como catador y cronista para Aus- tral Spectator relevando Chile y Perú en la edición 2005 y luego coeditando la guía entre 2011 y 2012. A contar de 2014 escribe semanalmente para el diario La Nación, donde actualmente tiene una columna llamada Sin Filtrar los días viernes en el puntocom. A principios de septiembre de 2019 fue contratado por la plataforma Vinous para reportar Argentina y Chile. Joaquín Hidalgo Born in Mendoza in 1978, Joaquin received his Certificate in Winemaking from the Liceo Agrícola in 1996. The following year, he took Journalism at the Universidad Nacional de la Plata, graduating in 2002. Since then he has lived in Buenos Aires, where he has built up an extensive career combining his two passions: writing and wine. He has worked for almost every media outlet that covers the area from the Country Herald to the Revista del Club de Vino, where he published his first signed articles, Playboy, Revista JOY, and La Mañana de Neuquen, for whom he has been a columnist since 2007. He has been a taster and correspondent for the Austral Spectator, covering Chile and Peru in 2005 and then co-editing the guide in 2011 and 2012. Since 2014, he has written a weekly column for the La Nación newspaper for whom he also writes a weekly blog called Sin Filtrar on their website. In September 2019, he was hired by the Vinous platform to cover Argentina and Chile.

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