Our Sommelier of the Month for June 2019 is Luca Piola from Wentworth Club. Luca has very kindly answered a selection of questions which are below along with his response.
How did you get into the wine industry?
I started with The Four Seasons hotel and resort back in 2009 and it was there where I fell in love with the hospitality world and the possibility that you have to create long lasting memorable experiences for others.
I have always enjoyed seeing my guests being looked after and recognising the special touches made for them to make them feel unique and special.
I fell in love with the wine industry during my first visit at a vineyard, I realised the massive workload that was required to create something so special and understood that there is so much love and passion in the industry of wines.
Why do you enjoy using Riedel glassware within your restaurant?
Riedel are simply unique and different as they are the perfect match between class, quality, style with strength.
What reaction do you get from customers when you serve their wines in the different varietal specific glasses?
Both knowledgeable and new wine explorers really enjoy the difference and the explanation behind the difference in glassware.
I believe that it gives a distinct touch and final flavour experience.
What has been your greatest wine experience to date?
Barolo 1978 and the labels had still the telephone number on the label, I recon the old marketing ways worked well...
Sommeliers have so much influence on new Riedel users. How in your view should we portray the “Riedel effect” at the table/bar?
I believe that the importance of using the correct glassware is underestimated, perhaps creating an experience where the glassware is the main star and making the difference understandable to the audience will be beneficial.
What has been your biggest wine faux pas?
Few years ago, I was working as a server in a restaurant that had dummy bottles exposed on the wall.
I still don’t know how but one of those dummy bottles ended in our wine fridge and, while I was opening the bottle in front of the guests, I realised that there wasn’t any wine in it, so I pretended that was corked and changed the bottle for a good one.