Judging began today on Imbibe’s sixth Wine List of the Year competition, with some of the country’s top sommeliers sitting in to peer over some of the UK’s top wine lists in Imbibe's very own offices.
Almost 300 lists were entered, from Scotland to the West Country, and pubs and bars to Michelin-starred restaurants. Judges included Master Sommeliers such as Xavier Rousset MS and Laura Rhys MS, long-time stalwarts of the on-trade including Martin Lam and Christine Parkinson, and modern day movers and shakers such as Athila Roos from The Arts Club and Lionel Periner of The Lucky Onion group.
Past winners have included big-name capital restaurants, such as Hakkasan, Coq d’Argent, and Clos Maggiore, as well as smaller venues from around the UK. Last year, for instance, saw top awards going to Bell’s Diner & Bar Rooms in Bristol, Allium Restaurant in Bath and The Wheatsheaf Inn in Gloucestershire.
‘It’s a fascinating exercise every year, to see new trends and great new names emerging,’ said competition director and editor of Imbibe, Chris Losh. ‘Rewarding excellence is very much what this magazine is all about, and this is a really high-profile way for the on-trade to be recognised by their peers.’
The finalists will be posted online in early August, with the eventual winners revealed in the November/December issue of Imbibe.