Young Sommelier CompetitionRBHK is in partnership with Hong Kong Sommelier Association (HKSA) to launch the first ever Young Sommelier Competition in 2017. The competition aims to recognise and support young talent in the F&B industry, encouraging them to master their craft. It’s a platform to engage those looking to become the master sommeliers of the future and further their learning of practical skills.

The competition is open to all sommeliers aged at or under 30 currently working in hotels, clubs, restaurants and bars or other F&B establishments. Participants will be put to the test in a highly challenging competition, including written and practical tests at the RBHK Wine Tasting Theatre on 6 September 2017. Candidates will be judged by a panel of Master Sommeliers eager to seek out and nurture upcoming talent in the industry.

Winners of the Young Sommelier Competition 2017

Champion: Mr. Mak King Yan, Sommelier, Landmark Mandarin Oriental
1st Runner-up: Mr. Ho Ho Yu, Sommelier, Mercato by Jean-Georges Hong Kong
2nd Runner-up: Mr. Li Wing Shum, Leo, Supervisor, Duddell’s


  • Aged 30 or below (as of 31 December 2017)
  • Currently working in restaurant, bar, club or hotel
  • Min. 3 months of experience in F&B trade in Hong Kong or Macau
  • Free of charge (waived for the first year launching)

*Exclusions for participation:
Both Executive Committee Members of HKSA and past years winners of the Best Sommelier Greater China are not allowed to participate.

The competition will cover the following:

  1. History of the vine and wine;
  2. Winemaking knowledge;
  3. Global geography of wine-growing and winemaking;
  4. Wine list: creation and correction;
  5. Liqueurs and Eaux de Vie;
  6. Service of wine: decanting, food and wine pairing, etc.;
  7. International food and wine pairings;
  8. Other beverages usually served in restaurants:  water, coffee, etc.;
  9. Cellar management;
  10. Wine vocabulary;
  11. Tasting of wines and spirits;
  12. Professional ethics and qualities of the sommelier.

The Sommelier Challenge will be comprised of 3 parts:

  1. Pre-competition Workshop.
    All candidates (can also bring associates to join) will attend the preparation workshop where they will be briefed on the details of the competition with practical assistance from the Challenge Technical Committee. The workshop itself will be a professional learning and upgrading opportunity for all the candidates. This workshop is tentatively scheduled to be on August 20 and 27, so all candidate will have at least a full day to get themselves prepared
  2. The first part (selection), tentative scheduled on 6th September morning, will be conducted behind closed doors, with one practical test and one written test: a questionnaire and a blind tasting. Three to five candidates will be qualified to the final around
  3. The second part (the final) will take place in the Restaurant & Bar Hong Kong 2017 performance stage on 6th September following the first round selection. Semi-final winners in the morning will compete for the Best Young Sommelier Hong Kong 2017 award.

Download the competition agenda on 6 Sep

The jury consists of professional sommeliers from the Association, from the world of wine, restaurant services, hotels and catering, and gastronomic journalists, under the chairmanship of the Hong Kong Sommelier Association Technical Committee.

Download rules & regulations


Contact Person:

Ms. Winnie Ho

[email protected] / +852 2827 6211

Supporting Association:
Well acclaimed as the only official Sommelier Association in Hong Kong and Greater China, HKSA is commissioned to set up a well-governed sommelier accreditation system across the region, with a principle objective of further upgrading the expertise of local sommeliers and wine industry players. HKSA is also committed to developing Hong Kong into a flourishing wine hub in the Asia Pacific region.

Wine Glass Sponsor: