World-class sommeliers to celebrate Finnish wine lists

Paz Levinson - one of the jury members

Our wine list celebration Star Wine List of the Year goes to Finland for the first time! It will be held Aug 31 in Helsinki, with the Finnish Sommelier Championship. All Finnish wine bars and restaurants are welcome to participate.

”We have had demand from sommeliers in several countries to celebrate their wine lists. Now we are thrilled to plan for a global tour of events and to come to Finland for the first time, especially after the tough times of covid,” says Krister Bengtsson, founder and publisher of Star Wine List.

Star Wine List of the Year is the wine list competition run by Star Wine List, the award-winning guide to great wine bars and wine restaurants present in over 20 countries. With a jury of some of the world's best sommeliers (Arvid Rosengren, Pascaline Lepeltier, Raimonds Tomsons and Marc Almert), national competition events will be held in a dozen countries around the world over the upcoming year. The first of these events will be held in Finland.

”We are extremely happy to welcome Star Wine List of the Year to join the Best Sommelier of Finland competition, sponsored by Wines of Germany, for the first time this year. We acknowledge not all great wine professionals and sommeliers that are interested to join competitions where it is required to perform on stage. With Star Wine List of the Year, also sommeliers who prefer to stay aside but are equally passionate in finding great wines for their guests can be recognised and rewarded. We hope our sommeliers are as excited about this opportunity as we are and have the courage to join the competition to show the rest of the world the level of wine expertise we have in this country,” says Heidi Mäkinen, President of the Finnish Sommelier Association.

Heidi Mäkinen MW. President Finnish Sommelier Association.

Winners in each country will be invited to the Global Star Wine List of the Year Final in Vienna in May 2021. And there, the best wine lists in the world will be crowned.

Moreover, the winners of the category Best Austrian Wine List in each country will get an all-inclusive trip to Vienna for the Global Final and Vievinum in May 2021, hosted by Austrian Wine.

From now until 23 July 2020 we will accept wine lists from wine bars and restaurants in Finland.

Venues that are listed by the guide Star Wine List are automatically entered into the competition – if we have an updated wine list (from the 1st of May, or later). Any other venue in Finland is also welcome to submit their wine list, and it is free of charge to join the competition. Please submit your wine list, with information about your venue and your sommelier team, to email address [email protected]

• Grand Prix (best wine list overall)
• Best wine list By the glass
• Best Austrian wine list presented by Austrian Wine
• Best German wine list presented by Wines of Germany

• Further categories will be added before the event.

Please note that the wine lists entered into the competition have to be regularly available to guests at the venue, either physically, digitally or on Star Wine List. Special wine lists prepared only for the competitions will not be accepted. We will also reserve the right to refuse wine lists we deem to break any of our rules, without explanation.

The jury votes independently, and the criteria are: width, depth, originality and value.

We could not be happier to present the jury for this Star Wine List of the Year event: Five renowned international sommeliers with tons of competitions on their resumés.

Arvid Rosengren
ASI Best Sommelier of the World 2016 and partner of Star Wine List, Arvid Rosengren returns to the jury duties after also having been part of the jury for Star Wine List of the Year in Sweden earlier this year. Arvid Rosengren is based in New York and heads up the wine program at the restaurant Legacy Records.

Paz Levinson
Argentinian top sommelier Paz Levinson is based in France, where she oversees the wine program for the entire Pic restaurant group. An experienced competitor, Paz Levinson has won the Best Sommelier of Argentina and Americas.

Pascaline Lepeltier
The influential and New York-based Lepeltier is managing partner and sommelier at Racines in Manhattan. She is also the Best Sommelier of France 2018 and has also won the prestigious title Meilleur Ouvrier de France.

Marc Almert
Marc Almert is the current 2019 ASI Best Sommelier of the World. Marc is from Germany but is currently Head Sommelier at Baur-au-lac in Zurich, Switzerland.

Raimonds Tomsons
Raimonds Tomsons is the ruling ASI Best Sommelier of Europe and Africa. Tomsons is the head sommelier at restaurant Vincents in Riga, Latvia.

A number of finalists will be presented in August. On 31 August, the winners will be announced during the Finnish Sommelier Championship in Helsinki. The winners are awarded Gold stars. The runners up will earn Silver and Bronze stars.

In addition to the honour and diplomas, winners of several categories will be invited to the Global Final of Star Wine List of the Year in Vienna, May 28, 2021. The Best Austrian Wine List winner will be invited, all-inclusive, to the Global Final and to Vievinum in Vienna 2021 by Austrian Wine.

For more information about the competition, see links below.

  • We welcome professional partners to our competitions, for example, to present a category in line with your brand. Reach out to us at [email protected] for more info.
Published 01-July-2020
News / Finland

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