Malaysia’s Best Sommelier Championship 2022

MBSC | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

The Sommelier Association of Malaysia recently crowned the champion of Malaysia Best Sommelier Championship 2022 held at The Gardens Hotel – A St Giles Signature Hotel Kuala Lumpur. The competition saw two days of challenges with 8 contestants, with Tan Chuan Ann taking home the title of Malaysia’s Best Sommelier 2022. Here’s how the whole thing went.

SOMLAY | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

Sommelier Association of Malaysia (SOMLAY)

The Sommelier Association of Malaysia (SOMLAY), founded in 1999, has been formed to improve all aspects of wine service in the Malaysian hospitality industry. This includes uplifting the standards of sommeliers within Malaysia, encompassing areas including wine knowledge and service.

“With the presence of Malaysian sommeliers abroad, the competition this year is of a very high standard. And the interest from local sommeliers are also very encouraging. Of course the target is to win the regional sommelier competition.” — Ronald Binati, President of the Sommelier Association of Malaysia.

The Judges Panel

The judges panel this year consisted of Teng Wee Jeh as Chief Judge with Roderick Wong as Competition Technical Director. The other judges on the panel included Wong Yin How of Vintry Group; Daisuke Kawai of La Terre Singapore; and Shawn Chong of Bar Mizukami.

The Competitors

Tan Chuan Ann, Head Sommelier, Resorts World Sentosa, Singapore
Tee Sih Huah, Wine and Liquor Consultant / Sales Marketing, RS Wines & Spirits Sdn Bhd
Yong Yi Ying, Sommelier, 67 Pall Mall, Singapore
Peter Teng, Head Sommelier / Operations Manager, The Marini’s Group, Kuala Lumpur
Shirley Tan, Senior Sommelier, 67 Pall Mall, Singapore
Britt Ng, Area Head Sommelier, Shangri-La Hotels & Hotel Jens by Shangri-La, Singapore
Eugene Chen, Retail Executive, Booze IT Wine & Spirits Merchant, Kuala Lumpur
Kathryn Wong, Sommelier, Jaan by Kirk Westaway, Swissotel Singapore

Theory Paper | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

The Challenges

The competition was held over two days with various tasks, where the first day whittles down from 8 contestants to a top 3, and on the second day, a second set of tasks are resulting with a champion.

Exam | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

The Challenges: Day One

On the first day, the tasks were divided in to a morning and afternoon session, with the first part of the test being having 4 tasks: –

  • White wine service from a bottle of Cotes du Rhone
  • Questions and answers between a Ruby Port and Tawny Port
  • Justify the price and promotion plan of a Bouzeron Aligoté
  • Recommendation of a food pairing with the Bouzeron Aligoté

The second part of day one was conducted in the afternoon consisting of 3 theory examinations papers and 2 blind tastings: –

  • Chilean wine paper
  • French wine paper
  • MBSC examination paper
  • 2 wines for blind tasting

The Challenges: Day Two

Day two of the challenge saw the shortlisting of the top 3, with Tan Chuan Ann, Peter Teng and Britt Ng placing in the top 3. This was followed by a rigorous examination in a real life setting, where a real live table settings. The tasks were as follows: –

  • Recommendation of a sparkling wine from a pushcart
  • Recommendation of food pairing excluding French wines
  • Recommendation based on a Private collection list
  • Recommendation of a digestif
  • Recognition of logos in a speed round

Sage Wine Dinner | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

SOMLAY Sage Wine Dinner

The first day of the competition ended with a soiree of wine and food pairing dinner at the Sage Restaurant organised by ProChile, in collaboration with the Embassy of Chile in Malaysia. The evening was attended by the Ambassador from the Embassy of Chile in Malaysia, His Excellency Diego Velasco-von Pilgrimm. During the dinner, each wine and food pairing was done by the former MBSC champions, namely, Mr Peter Teng, Mr Britt Ng, Mr Justin Ho and Ms Yong Yi Ying.

Gala Dinner | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

SOMLAY Gala Dinner

Day 2 saw the closing of the competition with the celebration with a Gala Dinner held at The Gardens Hotel, with the tasting of a selection of interesting wines while winners were announced.

Finalist | Malaysia Best Sommelier Competition 2022 | Food For Thought

And The Winner Is…

The competition completed with Tan Chuan Ann of Head Sommelier at Resort World Sentosa, Singapore taking first place followed by Peter Teng, the Sommelier with The Marini’s Group as 1st Runner Up and Britt Ng, Cluster Sommelier, Shangri-La Singapore as 2nd Runner Up.

“The competition this year was not only meant to bring together the brightest Malaysian Sommeliers to vie for the title but also served as a springboard for career advancement for both the winner and contestants. This competition was designed to be a rigorous examination of a sommelier’s wine knowledge and talents in the hospitality and tourism industry not only in Malaysia but the whole world.” — Teng Wee Jeh, Chief Judge.

Prizes include a VINTEC wine chiller for the Champion sponsored by Kitch (M) Sdn Bhd; a Bespoke Tailoring voucher for the top 3 finalists sponsored by BarTailor; Malaysia Best Sommelier Championship 2022 Winner’s Trophy sponsored by Möet Hennessy Diego (MHD) Malaysia, 2nd runner-up’s trophy sponsored by Caldbeck McGregor (M) Sdn Bhd; and wine openers for all sommeliers sponsored Ligne W & Chateau Laguiole.


Nicholas Ng

Nicholas Ng is a restaurant critic and drinks writer and is the editor of independent publication Food For Thought. He has been a freelance journalist for the 15 years and has previously worked as a lawyer and in digital marketing. He currently is the Principal Consultant of A Thought Full Consultancy, a food and beverage marketing consultancy.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *