The Sommeliers Selection Wine Competition is judged solely by top South African Sommeliers. With the growth of the food and wine industry in South Africa over the last 20 years, consumers are looking for experienced guidance when it comes to selecting wine, this competition does that.

Wines that are stylistically similar can stand alongside each other, even though they may be of different varietals, blends and pricing categories. The panel of Sommeliers judges and chooses wines to match the award categories. Panel members blind taste the wines individually, before discussing the wines and deciding if the wine fulfils the criteria of being placed on the Sommeliers Selection wine list.

At the annual feedback session the panel discusses the wines, what they look for in a perfect wine list and which wines impressed them with an emphasis on the importance of judging wines for ideal pairing with food.

Joakim Blackadder, a board member of The South African Sommeliers Association (SASA), chaired the 2017 Judging panel of Sommeliers, he had this to say:

 Freshness, expression and elegance were attributes that stood out amongst this year’s winners at the Sommeliers Selection. The competition, now in its third year, has become one the most relevant and exciting competitions on the yearly calendar with its unique angle and approach. Lengthy and passionate discussions took place between the experienced sommeliers on the panel pertaining to the wines age worthiness, suitability to food, and the overall value for money. At the end, all wines awarded and selected for the wine list was ratified by one final re-tasting by the chair and the two heads of panel. The resulting selection of awarded wines are truly some of the best in the country, and something we can all proudly stand behind. Bravo!

After tasting nearly 400 wines the panel awarded Flagstone Wines the most listings in the 2017 Sommeliers Selection, featuring our wines in the following categories:

Economically Savvy

Dragon Tree Cape Blend 2014

Truth Tree Pinotage 2016

Elegant and Classy

Treaty Tree Reserve Sauvignon Blanc/Semillon 2016

Voluptous & Rich

Dark Horse Shiraz 2014

Joakim Blackadder was supported by members of SASA and BLACC, namely: Pearl Oliver, Joseph Dafana, Billet, Magaia, Barry Scholfield (Panel Chair), Esme Groenewald, and Spencer Fondaumiere (Panel Chair)

The Trainee Judges are: Melusi Magadhi and Minnie Mthombeni.

Public Tasting will be taking places on Wednesday 28 September in Johannesburg, and Thursday 5 October in Cape Town.

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