Jeunes Sommeliers Competition - Judges

International Final - Wiesbaden (Germany), September 14-17, 2022

It is with great pleasure that I introduce you to our panel of judges
" We are certainly indebted to Brian, Matteo, Virginia and Maximilian for all their efforts and professionalism "

Having missed the 2021 Final in Lyon, we were delighted that Brian Julyan, who otherwise had been Head Judge of the Competition every year since its inauguration in 2007, was able to travel to Wiesbaden to chair the panel of judges this year.

We are certainly indebted to Brian, Matteo, Virginia and Maximilian for all their efforts and professionalism ensuring that the Semi-final and Final were faultless in their organisation and implementation.

Marie Jones
International Vice-President
Chair, Jeunes Sommeliers Competition Committee

Photographer: Alexandra Kapherr

Brian Julyan, Jury Chair
Grand Officier Maître Sommelier, Bailliage of Great Britain
President and Chief Financial Officer, Court of Master Sommeliers Europe
Brian gained his Master Sommelier qualification in 1972, after which he proposed the formation of the Court which was ultimately established in 1977. A professional consultant and educator, Brian has worked in all areas of the hospitality industry as well as being a chief examiner/judge for a multitude of programmes and competitions. Brian now devotes much of his time to mentoring candidates preparing for the Court’s MS exam.

Matteo Montone
Maître Sommelier, Bailliage of Great Britain
Matteo is Group Wine Director for Ennismore Hospitality Group - owner of Maison Estelle, The Hoxton, Gleneagles and Gleneagles Town House hotels. After studying tourism, he realised his true passion was wine and completed the Italian Association Sommelier Course in 2012. In 2013, he moved to London to further his career, including a spell at The Ritz. He became a Master Sommelier with the Court in 2020, a year after becoming the Chaîne’s Best Young Sommelier at the International Final held in Seoul.

Virginia Philip
Échanson Provincial, Bailliage Provincial of Southeast, USA
Virginia is The Breakers Palm Beach Wine Director who also owns a wine shop in Royal Poinciana Plaza also in Palm Beach. In 2002 she became the 11th woman in the world to earn the Master Sommelier accreditation. She has received numerous accolades during her career. Of particular note was that from 2002-2006, she was named “Best Sommelier USA” by the American Sommelier Association. In 2015, she received an Honorary Masters Degree in Oenology from her alma mater, Johnson & Wales.

Maximilian Wilm
Maître Sommelier, Bailliage of Germany
Since participating in the 2017 International Final of the Chaîne’s Jeunes Sommeliers Competition, in 2019 Maximilian won the title of “Germany’s Best Sommelier” in the national competition organised by the Sommelier-Union Deutschland. Furthermore, he came a creditable 6th in the ASI Best Sommelier of Europe & Africa 2021 held in Cyprus. Now, he is aiming to take part in the 2023 World’s Best Sommelier competition in Paris. Maximilian is Sommelier at Kinfelts Kitchen & Wine in HafenCity, Hamburg, not far from the Elbphilharmonie. The restaurant has a reputation not only for being able to eat well there but also for the 400 wines on its list, all of which Maximilian personally serves and tastes every time. “I want to save the guest from being disappointed,” says the man who has the cheapest bottle for 24 euro and the most expensive for 3000.

Lisbon, October 16-20, 2024

International Final 2024

International Final - Ljubljana (Slovenia), September 15-16, 2023

Slovenia did us proud!

International Final - Ljubljana (Slovenia), September 15-16, 2023

Profiles of the fourteen who participated

Search in map