A rich calendar for the new Ais Sicilia school which kicked off on June 3rd. The project proposes a program made up of multiple insights into the various facets of the Sicilian wine heritage and other products of excellence.

The School of Competitions will end on October 7th, to leave room for the annual appointment of the Best Sommelier of Sicily Competition , which will be held on October 15th.
An important project that has found a strategic partner in the Consorzio di Tutela vini Doc Sicilia and which, in the logic of an "itinerant" school, finds hospitality in five different cellars of the DOC Sicilia producers. Each lesson will end with a blind tasting of 5 wines with as many focuses on native vines and Doc Sicilia blends .
The educational path will involve 3 national champions, Best Sommeliers of Italy, and two regional champions as Ais teachers. Each lesson will include a theoretical part and practical technical tests also in English and will be broadcast online with recordings that can also be used offline by the participants. To date, there are 34 members, coming from all the provinces of the island.
The first lesson took place on June 3rd at Cantine Europa and was held by the National Ais Competitions Manager Maurizio Zanolla, Best Sommelier Tuscany 2005. In the first meeting various topics were discussed including: food/wine pairings with tangible examples of transversality of Sicilian wines and a focus on the world of wine outside national borders, investigating both the international and European environments. During the lesson, 5 Doc Sicilia wines of the native Catarratto variety were tasted. On 5 June, the Casteldaccia winery of Duca di Salaparuta was the host of the second lesson, held by Simone Loguercio Best Sommelier of Italy 2018. Also in this juncture the DOC Sicilia wines were the protagonists with the focus on Grillo, with a tasting of 6 different expressions of the vine, from sparkling wine to late harvest.
After the summer break, the program will resume in September/October, a period that will see students engaged in the last three lessons:

  • Monday 11 September 2023, at Alessandro di Camporeale with Valentino Tesi Best Sommelier in Italy 2019 who will talk about Trento Doc, Service and Communication and will curate the tasting in English with tasting of 5 Doc Sicilia wines with a focus on the native Sicilian vine Nero D 'avola
  • Saturday 30 September 2023, at Tenute Gorghi Tondi with Lusito Perrazzo Best Sommelier of Italy 2005 who will discuss beer, blends, tea, distillates, cigars and chocolate with tasting of 5 Doc Sicilia wines and focus on Blend Bianchi.
  • Saturday 7 October 2023, at Feudo Maccari with Antonio Riontino Best Sommelier Puglia 2017 who will deal with the written tasting, written and oral communication test, practical examples with tasting of 5 Doc Sicilia wines with a focus on the Red Blends.

The awaited final of the Best Sommelier Sicily Competition will take place on 15 October, which will see a first preliminary written test from which the finalists will be decreed. The last challenge will be open to the public and will end with a tasting of the excellent Sicilian wine products. The winner will automatically enter the final of the Best Sommelier of Italy competition, set for next November, without going through the preliminary stages.
The regional and thematic competitions and above all the competition for the Best Sommelier in Italy are a recognition of the commitment made by the sommeliers who, with passion, narrate the world of Italian wine and become ambassadors of entire territories such as, in this case, Sicily. The Consorzio Tutela Vini Doc Sicilia is an actor and custodian of the wine culture of the island and the partnership with the Scuola Concorsi AIS is another important element in the story of the excellent wines produced in this unique wine area.