Philly Sommelier Takes Top Spot at New York Wine Competition

by Ben Lemoine on Apr 21, 2016 in Wine

Justin Timsit, currently the Wine Director at The Rittenhouse and Lacroix, made waves this Monday at “Austria Uncorked” (a triathlon of Austrian wine in NYC) when he won it all, including the title of “New York’s Best Sommelier.”  Sponsored by the Austrian Wine Marketing Board, the contest aimed to highlight the diversity and versatility of the country’s wines through the talent of New York’s vibrant sommelier community.  The field narrowed by half (leaving about 30 contestants) after a rapidly timed quiz, and the remaining elite competitors were almost exclusively New York City locals hailing from Michelin-starred restaurants and the hottest wine bars in the five boroughs.

This time, it was the "Sixth Borough" (as Philly is often called) that brought it home. The daylong tournament included an exhaustive theory exam, blind tasting, and finally, a 5-course wine pairing and bottle presentation that played to Mr. Timsit’s strengths. “We practice a really high level of service at the hotel,” says Timset, “so a lot of the things that people have to think about in service exams come as habit. When that’s the case, you can focus on other things” — like the brutal bombardment of questions about Austrian wine coming from the judges mid-pour.  Justin’s love and knowledge of Austrian wine, citing its sense of place and menu friendly character, helped him take the top spot in this tough competition. “They’re some of the most versatile wines in the world when it comes to pairing with food,” says Timsit. “I would say [Austrian wine] is a passion of mine.”

Rewarded with a trip to the VieVinum International Wine Festival in Vienna this summer, Justin is riding high but is keeping focused on the real prize — achieving his Master Sommelier diploma.  “I feel comfortable and confident, but you never know,” he says about the impending exam, which is famed for its difficulty.  Show Justin some love and order a crisp glass of Austrian Grüner Veltliner at The Rittenhouse’s Bar210 or The Library Bar for a perfect springtime wine. 

Photos via Flickr user Stewart & the Rittenhouse Hotel


Tags: Wine
Recent Articles
spacer

Feedback

How are we doing? Tell us what you like or don't like and how we can improve. We would love to hear your thoughts!

*Name:
*E-mail:
*Suggestions:
 
Hold Onto Your Eggos: Chicago Now Has a 'Stranger Things' Pop Up Bar

Hold Onto Your Eggos: Chicago Now Has a 'Stranger Things' Pop Up Bar

Grab your compasses and head to The Upside Down, a Stranger Things themed pop up bar in Chicago situated in Em...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Aug 22, 2017
Best Bars For Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2017

Best Bars For Outdoor Drinking in Philadelphia, 2017

Whether it's to enjoy the first warm breezes of spring or the summer's sunshine, Philadelphia is full of great places to drink in the great outdoors....read more ›

by Drink Philly Apr 11, 2017
SPONSORED
Skybrunch Rectanlge Ad
Skygarten is Hosting a Solar Eclipse Watch Party on Monday, August 21

Skygarten is Hosting a Solar Eclipse Watch Party on Monday, August 21

Philadelphia's tallest beer garden, Skygarten, will host a solar eclipse watch party on Monday, August 21 from...read more ›

by Drink Philly Aug 20, 2017
Tackle Sexism in the Brewing Industry at Women in Brewing Symposium, August 20

Tackle Sexism in the Brewing Industry at Women in Brewing Symposium, August 20

The Philadelphia chapter of the Pink Boots Society and the Brewing Sciences Program at the University of the S...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Aug 15, 2017
A Brewery in Scotland is Marketing the 'World's Strongest Beer'

A Brewery in Scotland is Marketing the 'World's Strongest Beer'

A Scottish brewery, Brewmeister, is marketing the strongest beer in the world: Snake Venom....read more ›

by The Drink Nation Aug 15, 2017
In Case You Had Forgotten, Drew Barrymore Tells Us How to Drink Wine

In Case You Had Forgotten, Drew Barrymore Tells Us How to Drink Wine

Back in April, Drew Barrymore sat down for an interview with Vogue about her latest rose from her wine company...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Aug 15, 2017
Philly's Best Happy Hours: $3 Appetizers, $4 Beers, & $5 Wines at The Dandelion

Philly's Best Happy Hours: $3 Appetizers, $4 Beers, & $5 Wines at The Dandelion

This week's installment is all about The Dandelion, Stephen Starr's British gastropub in the heart of Rittenho...read more ›

by Drink Philly Aug 15, 2017
Effen Vodka is Hosting a Free Live Art Demonstration by Lefty Out There Featuring $8 Cocktails, August 11

Effen Vodka is Hosting a Free Live Art Demonstration by Lefty Out There Featuring $8 Cocktails, August 11

Join Effen Vodka on Friday, August 11 at James Restaurant and Lounge for a free live art demonstration by Left...read more ›

by Jessie Donofrio Aug 11, 2017
SEED Fest, Philly's Only Vegan Food & Beer Festival, is Returning on August 13

SEED Fest, Philly's Only Vegan Food & Beer Festival, is Returning on August 13

On Sunday, August 13, Philly's only fully vegan food and beer festival, S.E.E.D. (Sustainable Everyday Edibles...read more ›

by Drink Philly Aug 10, 2017
SPONSORED
View all Articles

Sign up to get weekly drinking news, bar reviews, events and more sent directly to your inbox!

Close