Estonian crowned Best Baltic Sommelier

An Estonian has been named Best Baltic Sommelier after winning the Vana Tallinn Grand Prix 2010.

The event, which was won by Kristjan Markii, was formed four years ago to promote wine drinking and to recognise talented sommeliers in the region.

Markii won a bespoke decanter and a wine tour worth €1000, courtesy of AS Liviko, owners of liqueur Vana Tallinn.

He said: “This year was the fifth time that I competed in the final of the Vana Tallinn Grand Prix. My competitors were tough but very pleasant.”

Kristel Nõmmik, president of the Estonian Sommelier Association, said: “Selection of the Best Baltic Sommelier is the annual highlight for the sommeliers. This year’s event is even more special for the Estonian Sommelier Association, because the competition is held in Tallinn and it coincides with the 10th anniversary of the association.”

Finalists of the competition undertook a series of skill tests including blind tasting, decanting, serving wine, food matching and correcting mistakes on a wine list.

In second place was Kristjan Peäske of Estonia, while Jānis Kaļķis of Latvia finished third.