48 wines, 16 sommeliers, 4 bars, 2 days, 1 winner. This can only mean one thing... the Wine Bar War will be returning to Imbibe Live this July and the lucky winner will win a trip to Chile in 2018!
Wine Bar War is a competition that pits four teams of four sommeliers against each other to literally ‘build a wine bar’ and open for business to an audience that will judge them on the concept and visual appearance, as well as their wine selection and service they offer.
Following on from the success of previous Wine Bar Wars in 2015 and 2016, the teams of sommeliers will do battle at Imbibe Live to be named 2017 UK Champions and to win a trip to Chile in January 2018.
Each team will be given space during set up day for Imbibe Live, a budget to build and decorate their bar, as well as access to a range of Chilean wines from which to select their wine lists.
Each team’s bar will need to be up and running for the opening of Imbibe Live when judges, including Ronan Sayburn MS and other key on-trade figures will review the pop-up wine bars. Over the course of Imbibe Live over 1000 guests per day will visit each bar, sample the range of wines and engage with the teams to see why they have selected the wines and how they would work on a wine list.
Importantly, the Imbibe Live visitors will be casting a critical eye over the competing wine bars and choosing a favourite for their vote.
Last year's winners were: Valentin Radosav from Gymkhana, Martyna Pawliczek from Medlar, Zigmars Grinbergs from Oblix at The Shard and Lukasz Walkowiak from the OXO Tower.
Martyna Pawliczek commented: 'Taking a place in Wine Bar War was an extraordinary experience and is one of the most interesting wine competitions available for sommeliers in the industry. I personally love the concept as it's very different than anything else, it stimulates many different skills compared to other competitions.'