SOMMELIERS AUSTRALIA, NSW CHAPTER NOMINATIONS FOR 2011 COMMITTEE 1 BEN MOECHTAR (current President, NSW chapter) 2 TIM STOCK (current Vice President, NSW chapter) 3 TRISH REDMAN (current Secretary/Admin, NSW chapter) 4 FRANCK MOREAU 5 KIM BICKLEY 6 GREG RICHARDSON 7 DANIEL WEGENER 8 TONY VENN 9 TRISTAN HABECK NEW 10 SEBASTIAN CROWTHER NEW 11 KYLA SMART NEW 12 MATTHEW SWIEBODA NEW 13 BANGO HARRIS-PLANE NEW 14 ADDY LAM NEW 15 LAIANA RYAN NEW 16 SOPHIE OTTON NEW SOMMELIERS AUSTRALIA, NSW CHAPTER NEW NOMINATIONS FOR 2011 COMMITTEE - BIOS TRISTAN HABECK After seriously getting into wine about 8 years ago, Tristan landed a job as Assistant Sommelier at Otto Ristorante, where Italian wine became the focus. Completing both the 1 year Sommelier Course and WSET Advancedlevel at the Sydney Wine Academy helped gain knowledge in all things vinous. In 2008, I started with the Merivale group to head up the Uccello wine team. Tristan is now Head sommelier at est restaurant, Merivale's 3 hat fine diner. In 2010 I attended Sommeliers Australia national scholar education program in Melbourne and was awarded Dux. As an active member of Sommeliers Australia, NSW chapter I would love the opportunity to sit on the committee & help to push the State chapter forward. It is an exciting time to be in the profession, with the wine education now available, plus the new & young wine professionals coming thru the ranks. SEBASTIAN CROWTHER After spending some time in London working in hospitality I decided to return home & continue this path. I completed the 1 year Sommeliers Course at Ryde Tafe & worked for a few years at the Shangri-La hotel & then as the Assistant Sommelier at Altitude Restaurant. Deciding to learn more about wine I spent a year in France with 5 months working at Domain de la Beaume as a cellar hand & a further 2 months driving through all the major wine regions in France - tasting the soil (so to speak) and meeting the people. An experience I will never forget! In 2008 I returned to Sydney & was offered a position as Assistant Sommelier then later Head Sommelier at Uccello Restaurant (Merivale group). My most recent move is now as Head Sommelier at the newly opened Felix Bistro. In 2009 I passed the Introductiory & Certified levels of the Court of Master Sommelier exams. Then in 2010 I was invited to travel to the UK in 2010 to sit the penultimate Advanced level of the Court of Master Sommeliers exams, which I passed! Education in our industry is hugely important in the progression of a Sommelier. Guidance from experienced & passionate members is key . Also, tasting events provide access to a wealth of knowledge & this is something I feel we can develop & strengthen as a united group of Sommeliers. KYLA SMART Kyla is a wine science student & currently working as a Sommelier at Glass Brasserie (Hilton Hotel, Sydney). In 2010 Kyla became a Court of Master Sommeliers Certified Sommelier & is now working & studying towards the Advanced Certificate. Kyla has worked in hospitality for 8 years. She hopes one day to make her own wine & is passionate about sustainability. MATTHEW SWIEBODA Sommelier. Bar Owner. Riesling lover. Although not necessarily in that order. I have been a practising Sommelier for the past 4 years, seeing short stints at est & Pier before settling at Quay. Career highlights include 3rd in Australia for the 2009 Court of Master Sommelier Certified exams & in 2010 finally opening my own wine bar "Love, Tilly Devine". Matt believes that if the sommelier profession is to move forward in Australia, its members must strive to better convey their love of wine to their guests. They must show their clienentelle that their role is not to put fine wine on a pedestal, but rather to describe it & serve it in a way that increases the guest's understanding of wine & ultimately the pleasure they derive from it. Matt believes the role of Sommeliers Australia should be to help its members learn more to become better tasters & communicators - not just for our own sake but for the people who we serve. SOMMELIERS AUSTRALIA, NSW CHAPTER NEW NOMINATIONS FOR 2011 COMMITTEE - BIOS BANGO HARRIS-PLANE My first wine-related memories are my parents leaving my brother and I locked in a car, whilst they went wine tasting in Coonawarra. Now it's the other way around! I grew up in restaurants, as my parents owned a couple. I used to organise the cellar after school in Adelaide at Nediz Tu in the late 1990's. I went overseas & worked in London for a couple of years, then came back to Adelaide & got stuck into learning about wine, working with James Erskine at Auge & a few months in the cellar at Leasingham in the Clare Valley. I am currently working asa Sommelier at est restaurant, & previously at Quay, Universal restaurant & the Bentley Bar. In 2009 I duxed the Australian Court of Master Sommeliers exams & in 2010 completed the Advanced level in London. I plan to have a crack at the Master's exams in 2011. I also write about food & wine, having completed a Graduate Diploma in Food writing from Adelaide University via correspondence. I feel that the group of Sommeliers we have in Australia at the moment are more talented & knowledgeable than ever before. I look forward to seeing us progress even further in the coming years. ADDY LAM Addy has worked as a Sommelier at many of Sydney's finest restaurants for the last 8 years, including Aria, Rockpool, Aqua Dining, Catalina, Pier & Industry - South of France. He is currently working as a Sommelier at Tetsuya's. Addy has completed the WSET advanced level & currently studying for the WSET Diploma at Sydney Wine Academy. As well as being involved in the Award winning wine lists at these restaurants he was a scholar in the 2010 Sommeliers Australia Education Scholarship. Addy has been a longtime supporter of the ASA, NSW chapter & now Sommeliers Australia. He believes that being a good sommelier isn't about knowing every wine producer & vintage in the universe, It's about the art of pairing wine with food, specifically, with the cuisine of a particular chef in a After all, you strip away all the fancy names, technical data and extreme adjectives, wine is really just a beverage a beverage that we drink with food." LAIANA RYAN Laiana has been working in the hospitality industry for over 10 years & is currently Sommelier at the Cotton Duck. Previously working as the Sommelier for Berowra Waters Inn,Three Clicks West, Bills in Surry Hills & part of the Versace Hotel team. Her achievements include winning Gourmet Travellers "Best New Wine List" Award whilst at Berowra Waters Inn, plus passing Court of Master Sommeliers Certified Level. Now aiming for the Advanced Level. Laiana believes wine is for sharing - both the drink & the knowledge, plus it should be inclusive rather than exclusive. She is a huge proponent of supporting the local industry, so NSW wines feature on the Cotton Duck list, as well as producers with sustainable, organic, biodynamic & natural philosophies. Wine will remain a life long passion for Laiana, & would like to join Soms Aust NSW Committee to share in building the knowledge of industry professionals in NSW. SOPHIE OTTON Sophie has worked as a Sommelier for many years & currently is Head Sommelier at Rockpool Bar & Grill in Sydney. Her many achievements include Gourmet Traveller Wine "2009 Sommelier of the Year" & "Best Wine list of the year". Sophie was previously on the Committee for ASA, Victoria until transferring to Sydeny for work in 2008. Prior to this Sophie was wine buyer for the European Group in Melbourne; National Marketing Manager of Two Hands in the Barossa Valley & long term Sommelier for the iconic Universal Bar in Adelaide. She travelled to London to pass the WSET Diploma & in 2009 passed the Court of Master Sommeliers Certified level. Sophie has won the Negociants Working with Wine Fellowship, been a Len Evans scholar, twice been a finalist in the Vin de Champagne awards & is a regular show judge. Plus a member of the Gourmet Traveller WINE’s tasting panel for the past eight years. Sophie was also on the committee of ASA Victoria, until moving to Sydney.