-Name: Jürgen Fendt
-At the moment: Germany
-Chef Sommelier / Winemaker
-Own Website: https://fendtwein.de/
Please, tell us a little bit about your first encounter with wine & the wine industry?
Any particular mentors at that time?
During my second trainee year I’ve got the first glass of wine which stayed in my mind. Since then I started to look behind the glass of wine! There are several mentors but I walked my way.
What specific traits or skills should a Sommelier(e) possess for professional performance and is there any person with that qualities you especially admire within the wine industry?
Kindness, team spirit, modesty, sensitivity, respect for the products —Melanie Wagner / Schwarzer Adler – Oberbergen —Michael Köhle / Herz&Niere – Berlin —
What would be your advice to a young Sommelier(e) i.e. Commis Sommelier(e) where to look finding an adequate position at home or abroad? Any further tips?
Walk on, don’t look back. It might be true that early bird’s would catch the worm – but Sommeliers go with staying power. And like always go far and come back to your homeplace when you would settle down.
When a customer asks for advice on selecting wine what’s in your opinion would be the best approach?
One or two short questions.
What’s your philosophy about glasses? Are you working with well known brands or are you considering new brands as well and how do you determine?
Keep it simple, but high class. What advice would you give people on pairing wine with food? —The same flavour’s in food and wine will match the best. —Basic food and basic wine – or otherwise Best food and the best wines.
Should a Sommelier(e) taste the guest’s wine?
Off course, when the sommelier is trained at the highest level.
Where would you suggest a young Sommelier start searching for Sommelier positions on the internet in your country?
It’s all about connecting people. If you know the people, the people know you and then you havn’t to search!
What are the key ingredients for creating a wine list for a restaurant and what is your opinion on some ridiculous pricing on wine in restaurants, do you have tips on how to determine mark ups?
Knowledge (client’s, kitchen style, the place, delivery capacity). Some wines are so sought after, that they shouldn’t be on wine list’s. Every sommelier should set the wine list to the working place, and not to the ability to buy special wines.
How do you manage to stay on top of the changes in the wine industry?
Reading, looking on the market, tasting all the time
How would a new vineyard get the attention of someone like you to notice their wine and what’s the best way for producers to improve their chances of being listed?
media, press and some whistleblowing
If you were a wine, which variety would you be, and why?
Pinot noir – more than fifty shades of red!
What are the top 3 types of wine (your faves) would we find in your home wine collection and what’s your desert island wine?
—Island wine: 1978 Hermitage La Chapelle / Jaboulet
Any interesting suggestions about magazines or online platform?
Look, read and and check it twice!
@ by Dominik Kozlik – Zeitgeist Sommeliers – www.sommelier-jobs.com