Wine List Confidential Awards 2019: Profiling the winners

Sommelier of the Year, sponsored by Quinta do Noval

Winner

Kelvin McCabe (Frog by Adam Handling)

Shortlist

Xavier Rousset MS (Cabotte)
Giovanni Ferlito MCA (The Ritz)
Kelvin McCabe (Frog by Adam Handling)
Stefan Neumann MS (Dinner by Heston)
Katie Exton (Lorne)
Oliver Christie (The Clove Club)

In what was possibly the most hotly contested category, judging proved that London has no shortage of sommeliers providing both great wine but also great service with their own signature style. This year, McCabe impressed with his sheer force of personality, with one judge describing him as “a very cool character. It was one of the best experiences I’ve ever had in a restaurant.”

Another added: “McCabe dispenses nuggets of wine knowledge with such enthusiasm, it feels like he is intimately acquainted with each and every grower.”

McCabe was inspired to apply for the role at Frog by Adam Handling after seeing the menu. “I thought ‘this is scary, outside my comfort zone, and what I need’,” he told Wine List Confidential author Douglas Blyde.

Before joining the Frog group, McCabe had chalked up stints at Roka, Zuma and Gilgamesh. Collecting the award on his behalf was Kevin Dupont (below).

To read the full interview, please click here. 

Kevin Dupont from The Frog team picked up the award on Kelvin’s behalf.

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