October 22, 2018 Comments (0) Views: 1402 Good Food Events

Get Ready For Montreal’s Somm360 Congress As It’s Going To Be Pretty Special

Photo Credit : Krystel V Morin

Photo Credit : Krystel V Morin


A look into one of the biggest weeks of wine education in North America

Montreal, October 17, 2018 – The Somm360 Congress releases its full preliminary program between Nov. 25-27, 2018, at Le Grand Quai in Montreal’s Old Port. The event will inaugurate one of the biggest weeks of wine education in Canada welcoming 300 passionate wine professionals paired with the best experts in the field to taste, learn and grow for three consecutive days.
“We are thrilled to release Somm360’s Congress program and its global Somm360 Ambassador Club today. After more than ten years in the wine business, I realize how strong the demand is for training and quality content worldwide. SOMM360 is our response to the growing need for continuing education for the most motivated professionals, including additional support for preparing for sommelier competitions by offering a complete 360-degree program, including specific, non-generic information” underlines Vincent Lafortune, president and founder of SOMM360.
Here is the first detailed look at the masterclasses program:  

Monday’s theme of the day: “Rhône Valley Vineyards Tasted by its geology” presented by Rhône Valley wines
Speaker: Christophe Tassan, MOF, Rhône Valley Wine ambassador
Follow one of the Meilleur Ouvrier de France, Christophe Tassan, in a journey to highlight Rhône Valley vineyards diversified geology through a blind tasting of different flights of wine. This seminar will be followed by a lunch with a Rhône influence.
Tuesday’s theme of the day: “BLIND TASTE THE DIFFERENCE” presented by Wines of Portugal  
Speaker: Sofia Salvador, Wine Educator, ViniPortugal
This masterclass will showcase a blind tasting of 4 flights of 4 wines each. In each flight three wines reflect the most typical style and one wine is an “intruder” that will have to be discovered by the participants. The last flight is about an out-of-the-box selection. This seminar will be followed by a lunch with a Portuguese influence and a special tasting activity to discover a wide range of Portuguese wine. 
“AUSTRIA OFF THE BEATEN PATH” presented on Monday by Austrian Wine
Speakers: Christian Zechmeister, Managing Director of Wine Burgenland & Katja Scharnagl, Chef Sommelier at Le Bernardin in NYC
This masterclass will present a deeper look into Austria’s diversity wine styles. In addition to Grüner Veltliner, other white varieties such as Neuburger, Rotgipfler, Zierfandler and Roter Veltliner – as well as the red varieties Zweigelt, Blaufränkisch, Sankt Laurent and Blauer Wildbacher – are highly respected and, in fact, treasured once again.
Speakers: Chris Ringland, Winemaker & José Miguel Sanmartín, General Manager & Íñigo Alberto, Sales director
The masterclass will cover the unique specificities of Garnacha from Campo de Borja including the Cierzo and geographic influence as well as the influence of the age of vines in the quality of the wine.
Speakers: Mark Davidson, Market Development Manager, Wine Australia & Michelle Bouffard, Sommelier, Author & Educator
This presentation will highlight premium, cool climate Pinot Noir and Chardonnay. The wines will be from regions that produce distinctive and expressive versions of these varieties. A focus on cool climate regions throughout Australia as well as the various clone types and vine plantings will be highlighted. The history and evolution of wine style and production will also be a topic of discussion.
Specific industry sessions
All participants will enjoy a particular industry session series called “A glass with…or a coffee with…” offering a behind the scenes look into the world of Sommeliers. The following Sommeliers will be among the presenters:

  • Paul Grieco, a Canadian born sommelier, James Beard Award winner, and restaurateur, living and working in New York City, will present his one-of-kind topic: A wine list that is only a list of wine, sucks!
  • Guillermo Cruz, Wine Director at Mugaritz (ranked #9 in the World’s 50 Best Restaurants list) will present for the first time in North America details about how he created one of the most unique food & wine pairing programs in the world.
  • Rajat Parr, three-time James Beard Award-winning author, sommelier, and winemaker will present for the first time in Canada his new book “The Sommelier’s Atlas of Taste” offering a new take into blind tasting region-by-region.

The other half of the detailed program will be released soon but the full preliminary program of the 3-day Congress is available online here: www.somm360.com/#schedule.

Tickets for industry professionals are available for a special early-bird rate of $199 ($399 regular) as long as quantities last here www.somm360.com/#tickets (all-inclusive masterclasses, tastings, wine bars, one cocktail dinner reception, two lunches, and networking.)



Sommeliers from over 20 countries will take advantage of its unique program. “Somm360 will undoubtfully be the best event in training of Sommeliers, the great level of attendees and the excellent creators is just what will make it a great success. It will be the event of the greatest Sommelier in the same place, giving the best of themselves to be the best” manifests Luis Morones Lopez, Best Sommelier of Mexico 2014, Wine Director, Hotel Presidente Intercontinental México City and participant of the event.
On top, 16 top international industry professionals followed Somm360’s invitation to become members of the global Somm360 Ambassador’s Club and will help represent Somm360 worldwide. 2018 members are:

  1. ALAIN BÉLANGER, 3rd Best sommelier of the world 2000, Educator, École Hôtelière de Laval, Montreal, Canada
  2. DJ KEARNEY, Educator of WSET, VP CAPS BC Chapter, Vancouver, Canada
  3. ELYSE LAMBERT MS, 5th Best sommelier of the world 2016, Sommelier Consultant, Montreal, Canada
  4. EMILY CAMPEAU, Wine Director, Candide, Montreal, Canada
  5. EVAN SAVIOLIDIS, CAPS Sommelier Instructor, Quench Magazine, Niagara Falls, Canada
  6. JASPER SUN, Vice Champion – Best Sommelier of China 2017, Owner & Sommelier, Wine Universe By Little Somms, Shanghai, China
  7. FERRAN CENTELLES, Drinks Director, elBullifoundation, Barcelona, Spain
  8. JOHN SZABO MS, Partner/Principal Critic, WineAlign.com, Toronto, Canada
  9. LEAGH BARKLEY, Best Sommelier of Bordeaux 2017, Wine Director, Il Caminetto, Whistler, Canada
  10. SOMM MARC- Marcos Flores, President of the Mexican Sommelier Association + CEO & Founder, Grupo Gemaric, Mexico City, Mexico
  11. MICHELLE BOUFFARD, Sommelier, Author & Educator, Montreal, Canada
  12. PAUL GRIECO, Sommelier and restaurateur, Terroir, New York City, United States of America
  13. PAZ LEVINSON, Executive Chef Sommelier, Groupe Pic, Paris, France
  14. TERRY KANDYLIS, Head Sommelier at 67 Pall Mall, London, United Kingdom
  15. VÉRONIQUE DALLE, Co-owner & Wine Director, Moleskine, Montreal, Canada
  16. MORGAN HARRIS MS, Head Sommelier Angler, San Francisco, United States of America


SOMM360 is a not-for-profit organization whose mission is to support the sommelier industry around the world through continuing education and training support for official competitions. Its purpose is to help sommeliers obtain the MS (Master Sommelier), MW (Master of Wine) or WSET (Wine and Spirits Education Trust) certifications, as well as assisting those who wish to pursue continuing education programs. More details at somm360.co

For more details on SOMM360, please contact: Stephanie Artner, artner@somm360.com

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