Raimonds Tomsons is 2017 Best Sommelier of Europe & Africa

The 14th ASI contest to determine the best sommelier in Europe and Africa took place in Vienna from 8 to 13 May 2017.

In all, 37 sommeliers came to Austria with one objective—to win the title as Arvid Rosengren did in 2013 in Sanremo, Italy.

For the first time, three sommeliers represented Africa, while 34 candidates were registered from Europe.

The first stage, which involved several written and practical tests, took place on Tuesday, 9 May.

At the end of this stage, twelve candidates were selected for the semi-finals:


  • Christian Jacobsen (Denmark),
  • David Biraud (France),
  • Terry Kandylis (Greece),
  • Julie Dupouy (Ireland),
  • Raimonds Tomsons (Latvia),
  • Piotr Pietras (Poland),
  • Julia Scavo (Romania),
  • Aleksandr Rassadkin (Russia),
  • Jakub Pribyl (Czech Republic),
  • Eric Zwiebel (United Kingdom),
  • Robert Andersson (Sweden),
  • Fabio Masi (Switzerland).

Gerard Basset, MW, MS, OBE, Best Sommelier in the World 2010, announced that time due to the very high level of competition, four finalists were selected instead of the usual three:

  • Piotr Pietras (Poland),
  • David Biraud (France),
  • Julia Scavo (Romania),
  • Raimonds Tomsons (Latvia)

After the final round of intense tasks, the winner was named:

Raimonds Tomsons

Guillaume Deglise, Vinexpo CEO, awarded the Vinexpo trophy to Raimonds Tomsons.

Tomsons is a Latvian sommelier working with Chef Mārtiņš Rītiņš in Vincents. He has worked in world-class restaurants such as El Bulli, Noma and Osteria Francescana. In 2016, he took seventh place at the ASI World Sommelier competition in Argentina.