August 2019 marked the 15th edition of the Korean Sommelier competition and another year of support and sponsorship of the Roussillon Wines Council for this tournament dedicated to deciding Korea’s best sommelier. Roussillon is dedicated to training Korea’s sommeliers, deepening their knowledge, developing their skills and fostering their trade.
As part of the partnership between the Korean International Sommelier Association (KISA) – the main organisers of this competition – and the Roussillon Wines Council, the French wine region gifts the two first-place winners with an all-expense-paid trip to Roussillon, as well as a bottle of Vin Doux Naturel – Roussillon’s treasure – to the top three candidates. Moreover, Eric Aracil, Export Manager and Deputy Director for the Council – serves as a judge in the final to decide who will be crowned the king of kings. The final is composed of six parts: a serving challenge, instantaneous food and wine pairing, a blind tasting on wine, a blind tasting on spirits, a wine/region quiz and a champaign serving challenge.
Another element of the competition is the Roussillon Special Prize, where the candidates showcase their knowledge of Roussillon. The winner is decided in a two part contest. Firstly, each sommelier must take part in a written examination made up of 40 questions on the region, its wines, history, and wine-making process. The top candidates then take part in a blind tasting composed solely of wines from Roussillon, both dry and sweet. The winner of this prize is gifted a bottle, as well as an all-expense-paid trip to Roussillon, alongside the top two Korean sommeliers.
Out of all the brilliant candidates, this year saw the following sommeliers win their trip to Roussillon: first place Kibeom Song (Hyundai Green Food), 2nd place Oh Jin Kwon (Lotte Hotel), 3rd place and special Roussillon prize winner Hyisu Han (SPC). Congratulation to all of the participating candidates and to the three above-mentioned winners. Also a special congratulations Kibeom Song who won the first ever Roussillon Special Prize when the Roussillon-KISA partnership first began.
Here found in order, first place winner, second place and Roussillon Prize Winner: First place winner Kibeom Song (Hyundai Green Food)
2nd place Oh Jin Kwon (Lotte Hotel)
Roussillon prize winner Hyisu Han (SPC)