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Jeunes Sommeliers Competition
The Report

International JS Final 2015 - Adelaide, Sept. 24-25, 2015

Great Britain’s Mathias Camilleri was declared the winner

The 2015 International Final of the Jeunes Sommeliers competition was held in Adelaide as part of a glittering Grand Chapitre ‘roadshow’ that attracted gourmets from 17 countries and across Australia.

The demanding judging over two days was led by Chairman of the Panel of Judges Brian Julyan MS, Officier Maître Sommelier.

The tension was palpable at the National Wine Centre on the Friday afternoon as three finalists battled it out to become Chaîne’s International Young Sommelier of the Year. The young contenders from Australia, Finland and Great Britain were magnificent before a rapt public, media and the formidable judging panel.

Earlier in the day they had performed a Champagne sabre cut that symbolized the drama and celebratory nature of the international event.

Chaîne members waited until that evening to see Great Britain’s Mathias Camilleri, a 27-year-old Frenchman working at London’s Medlar Restaurant, declared the winner at a glittering dinner held in the historic Mortlock Library.

Heidi Mäkinen from Restaurant C in Tampere, Finland, was Runner‐up and Australia’s Mattia Cianca, of Melbourne’s Attica Restaurant, was in Third Place.

Mathias received the Competition’s Gold Medal, an engraved silver tray, a Champagne sabre, a wine scholarship from Le Cordon Bleu, a six‐litre bottle of Irvine Grand Merlot, a magnum of Laurent Perrier champagne and a Wempe Zeitmeister wristwatch.

Runner-up Heidi Mäkinen and Third Placed Mattia Cianca were respectively each presented with the Silver and Bronze awards. They both received silver‐plated trays and a three‐litre bottle of Irvine Grand Merlot.

After his win Mathias told photojournalist and wine blogger Milton Wordley, “There’s only one competition for young sommeliers and that’s this one. To win this is fantastic. I've been working with two head Sommeliers since I was in England and they have both won this competition.”

The Awards & Presentation Dinner was a link in ‘World Chaîne Day’ – the chain of special events around the world that followed the sun across the world from New Zealand to the Cook Islands.

To decide the three contenders for the Final, the 14 competitors were subjected to a blind tasting, exacting practical tests and penetratingly complex questions from judges who sat at three ‘restaurant’ tables with appropriate backdrops of wine barrels and service equipment.
International guests were unanimous that Adelaide and South Australia had risen to the occasion and rolled out its best spring sunshine and legendary hospitality to stage an event of gastronomic and tourism excellence.

The success of the event was sealed by the support for the International Jeunes Sommeliers Committee (Klaus Tritschler and Marie Jones) received from Bailli Délégué Norm Harrison, his Bailliage officers and helpers, local sponsors and of course the panel of judges comprising: Brian Julyan MS and Bryan Dawes MS from the United Kingdom, Germany’s Frank Kämmer MS and Australia’s Franck Moreau MS.

Managing Editor’s note
With much appreciation to media professional Ron Dent (www. faceworks.com.au) for his significant contribution (entirely free of charge) in publicising the event through his regular ‘Breaking News’ releases. It is from these that the above report has been prepared.

Thanks are also very much due to Bryan Charlton and Clark Rodda for their excellent photographs used to illustrate this article.

Marie Jones, Managing Editor

The competitors

Australia - Mattia Cianca (Attica Restaurant, Melbourne)
Canada - Peter Smolarz (Willow Park Wines & Spirits, Calgary)
Denmark - Rune Sauer Sonnichsen (Restaurant Mêlée, Frederiksberg)
Finland - Heidi Mäkinen (Restaurant C, Tampere)
Germany - Marc Almert (Fairmont Hotel Vier Jahreszeiten, Hamburg)
Great Britain - Mathias Camilleri (Medlar Restaurant, London)
Korea - Yoon Hee Lee (Restaurant Chef’s Note, Seoul)
Macau - I Wa Lao (Four Seasons Hotel)
Norway - Adrian Breiby (To Rom og Kjøkken, Trondheim)
Philippines - Pilar Almario
Russia - Dimitry Frolov (Restaurant Mansarda, Saint Petersburg)
Singapore - Xi Yang Yeo (Les Amis Restaurant)
Turkey - Nebiye Kaya (IWSA, Istanbul)
USA - Mia Van de Water (Restaurant North End Grill, New York)

Jeunes Sommeliers Competition Committee

Grand Argentier Joseph M Girard (Chair)
Klaus Tritschler, Member of the Conseil d’Administration
Marie Jones, International Vice-President