Following two tumultuous years for the UK on-trade, the IWSC is delighted to once again be offering an award for Emerging Talent in Wine Hospitality.
This award was created to recognise the dedication and hard work of an individual in the hospitality industry who is focussed on offering fantastic customer service, looking after colleagues within and finding innovative ways to draw customers back out to restaurants.
Following last week’s announcement of the four shortlisted entrants for this award, the IWSC is delighted to name Daniel Stojcic as the winner of this year’s award Emerging Talent in Wine Hospitality.
The Raby Hunt, Co. Durham
Our judging panel was highly impressed by Daniel’s entry, which highlighted his dedication to his trade and to his co-workers, as well as the incredible amount Daniel has achieved in such a short space of time.
Having left a career in tech in search of a a role with more human interaction, Daniel aspires to be an educator to the more junior members of the trade: “Though I am only at the start of my career, I want to be able to help and inspire the next generation of sommeliers” he said.
Daniel is the Head Sommelier at The Raby Hunt, a two Michelin star restaurant located in Summerhouse, County Durham. He joined the hospitality industry in 2013, working in restaurants in Northern Ireland before relocating with his fiancée to take on his role at The Raby Hunt.
His craving for greater human interaction in his career has ensured that customers are the favourite part of his job. Daniel feels it is the role of the sommelier to pass on the feelings of love, passion and fun the wines evoke, to the customer. He loves bringing customers a sense of joy.
His unusual food and wine pairing caused much discussion amongst our judging panel, with Daniel opting for lobster ravioli and sauce Américaine paired with a 1997 Tignanello: “Usually you would lean towards a crisp white wine when it comes to lobster but this dish has so much flavour, richness and a little hint of spice that this aged Tuscan Sangiovese works beautifully with the flavour components of this dish.”
Daniel will be awarded a £2.5k educational travel bursary from the IWSC Foundation which he intends to use to travel to New York to meet and work for his idol, renowned Sommelier and winemaker, Aldo Sohm.