Fierce Competition Expected at the 2014 “Somms Under Fire” Event

Fierce Competition Expected at the 2014 “Somms Under Fire” Event

On Sunday, January 26th, 2014 three top Sommeliers will prove their “Perfect Pairing” skills in front of a lively audience and a Judges Panel.  Are you one of the three to compete at The Scottish Rite Theater in Austin, Texas? Then register!  The competition is open for entry to all Beverage Industry Professionals, or any person who is currently employed in the beverage industry for a restaurant, retailer, distributor or supplier, except for someone attaining the highest level of certification by their governing body, like a MS or MW. During the period between Monday, August 19, 2013 and Friday August 30, 2013, professionals can submit preliminary Entry information, along with a $25 non-refundable entry fee. Upon completing Entry information, entrants will receive an email with information about the testing window that will begin on Sunday September 8, at 12 Noon and will end on Monday, September 16th at 11:59 PM.  This test is a 30 minute timed online test, which offers a good knowledge-based testing opportunity for the entrant.  This test will determine three final contestants, as well as two alternates for the final competition, which will be announced on #SommChat on October 23, 2013.

The Winning Sommelier of the Final Competition will receive a grand prize of a one week Wine Internship in Burgundy, France with a renowned wine professional.  Last year’s leader of the Burgundy Internship program was famed author and Master of Wine, Jasper Morris.

To submit their Entry Information, the candidate can go to, where they can also find the official contestant rules, as well.  In addition to this being a professional growth experience for the final competitors, it also offers some promotion for their company/employer as this event is promoted by many over social media.

The three final contestants will conduct onsite wine and food pairing challenges in front of a Judges panel of Industry Professionals.  All wine and food items will be presented at the time of the competition, not prior to the event.  Details of each challenge will be announced onsite immediately preceding the competition.  Contestants will be notified if he/she needs to bring any equipment, tools, or other items needed to complete the challenges.  Contestant performance of each challenge will be judged on quality of pairing selection (40%; 0-20 pts), educational presentation (20%; 0-10 pts), service (20%; 0-10 pts), and originality of pairing (20%; 1-10 pts).

Best of luck and may the best sommelier win, and a big thanks goes out to Somms Under Fire founder, Keeper Collection, LLC!


About the Author:

Editor and co-founder of, Pamela is a sommelier and former restaurant manager and wine buyer with Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET), Court of Master Sommeliers & Center for Wine Origins certification. She has contributed to or been quoted by various publications, including the Los Angeles Times, Sommelier Journal, Vegetarian Times, VIV Magazine, UC-Berkeley Astrobiology News, The Washington Post, the Associated Press, NPR and USA Today. True to her roots, she seeks varietal and appellation integrity and is always passionate about finding the next great bottle of wine.

Leave A Comment