(pronounced some-mel-yea) is a wine professional employed
by top eateries around the world.
The word itself is derived from old French soumelier, the person in charge of transportation of supplies.
sommeliers can be kind assistants in choosing and delivering the right wines to your table.
they can also strike fear into the hearts of restaurant wait staff
or guests with an almost superhuman expertise.
What exactly does an expert sommelier do?
In a good
restaurant, the sommelier's duties include keeping the wine cellar
stocked, and knowing exactly which of the jewels in the racks
will make the menu shine.
are also experts in the art of serving wine and, in effect, they
are professional wine collectors who gets to share the best of
the collection with (hopefully) appreciative restaurant patrons.
do not just pair
wine with food. The primary duty of this professional is to
provide each guest with hospitality and service, no matter what
price range or beverage they prefer. Real masters must will know
about beverage service of any kind, right down to choosing which
cigars will complement the after-dinner drinks!
The sommelier's job can get complicated
be both confused and demanding. When these demands override the
experience and knowledge of a professional, it may become frustrating
for everyone. A good sommelier will listen to what the diner wants,
no matter how unclear it may seem, and provide a drink to match
the meal and the customer's tastes.
the best wines and beverages on a restaurant budget is not easy,
and trying to educate the wait staff and customers can also be
a strain. It is a specialized profession, but in return, a sommelier
does get paid to spend the day tasting fine wines and, occasionally,
providing a new wine experience to a very grateful guest.
to 2003 data, from the Court of Master Sommeliers, earnings varied widelyfrom about $28,000 for a sommelier with limited experience to $80,000 to $160,000 for a Master Sommelier.
Court of Master Sommeliers - Separate sites for the UK
and the US. Both sites use Flash, which means they take a while
to load. The US site loads faster and has US jobs and classes,
but the general information applies to any country. The UK site
is a wait, even at high speed. Go get a glass of wine to sip if
you're accessing the Internet through a dial up modem. If you
are considering getting certified in the UK, it's worth the wait.
Sommeliers - Interviews with many of the top Sommeliers from the United
States provide insight into this professional and answer some questions on wine
I Became a Sommelier - In explaining why and how he became a Sommelier,
Mark Storer explains a bit about the knowledge that a person in this position
is required to have.
Young Sommelier Competition - The Young Sommelier Competition promotes
the expertise of the young wine and spirit professional and encourages mastery
of wine and spirit knowledge. The
Young Sommelier Competition is conducted and administered by the American Chapter
of the Court of Master Sommeliers.