As we head into summer here in Europe and winter for our colleagues in the southern hemisphere, there’s no better time to reflect on the year that has passed. It has been an eventful one for our profession, with several important milestones reached. The ASI is celebrating 50 years of existence, as are other trailblazers such as the Japan Sommelier Association, an ASI member, and the Union de la Sommellerie Française (UDSF).
Among the many national member organizations, we have also seen familiar faces re-elected to the presidency in countries like France, Italy and Slovakia, and new ones in other places like Luxembourg, Singapore and South Africa. All share a dedication to sharpening the skills of existing sommeliers, recruiting the next generation of talent and, always, expanding and improving customer education so that the field can continue to grow.
Congratulations also go out to the many new national Best Sommeliers, and of course to Marc Almert of Germany, our newly crowned Best Sommelier of the World. May you reign well!
And finally: no recounting of 2019 would be complete without one more tip of the glass to the inimitable Gérard Basset, who sadly left us in January. Salut!