We recently celebrated a momentous anniversary: 50 years.
Let us draw on the tremendous positive energy from that milestone and turn our eyes to the challenges ahead.
Some relate to the relationship between sommelier and guest. In how we educate guests at the table and make daring new additions to our drinks lists. In how we present ourselves online. In securing strong media coverage of Best Sommelier contests to highlight the astonishing knowledge and talents of our members.
But other steps need to be taken on our own, away from the spotlight. The first of these is often the hardest: simply acknowledging the need for change and growth.
As an organization, this means recruiting even more top service professionals to join our ranks, and promoting the next generation as they begin their journey in our wonderful trade. It means embracing talented sommeliers who come from different paths of life, helping them achieve the high levels of knowledge, skills, and experience required for the ASI Diploma.
It means working to make the ASI family stronger everywhere it is active. And to grow it into places where it isn’t yet.
So my appeal goes out not just to the champions and elected officers, but to our all of our members: Attend, or even help organize, your local and national events! Test the limits of your wine knowledge and expand your horizons! And above all else: help grow and nurture the ASI family! This is the best path to our next celebratory milestone in 50 years.
Our organization may have moved beyond its French origins, but one classically French ideal should still ring in all our ears: ‘Liberté, égalité, fraternité’.
And, as always, santé!
President, Association de la Sommellerie Internationale