Sommelier opportunities at 5star establishments

Michael Pettit & Associates (MPA) is a specialist hospitality recruitment company. We have excellent Sommelier opportunities available with 5 star establishments throughout South Africa.

Candidates must have a formal qualification, 1-2 years experience and a passion for wine.

To request further information or to apply please email us.
Send your CV in word format with a head and shoulders photo of yourself to


Junior Sommelier – President Hotel

You will be a good match for this position if you are a well-spoken (and preferably well-travelled) candidate with a passion for wine. You should be service orientated and exceptionally strong in Sales as this position entails great incentive opportunities based on upselling and sales margins met.
Your application will only be considered if you meet the minimum requirements below:

– A stable work history with at least 2 years in each position
– Good references for all of your previous employers
– We regret – South African resident applications only
– Formal related qualification
– Excellent F&B knowledge and South African wine knowledge
– Computer literate and very organised admin skills
Key Job functions :
– F&B service (functions etc.)
– Sales sales sales
– Hosting
– Wine service, tours, menus, training
To apply for this position, please forward to Dee Orrie at

– Your updated CV in word or PDF format
– We are unable to assist you if you do not have excellent references from at least your last 3 consecutive employers
– A friendly, professional, clear head and shoulders photograph

Seven tips for new sommeliers

1. Make sure your beverage program is financially viable. This means proper costings and inventory management. Get good at Excel. 2. Question why you do what you do and why others do what they do. Always search for better ways to do things. 3. Know the difference between service and hospitality. Be great at both. …

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Tasting Room Ambassador – Constantia

Well established wine farm in Constantia seeks a motivated, energetic and competent Tasting Room Ambassador.

The ideal candidate has to have at least minimum 2 years relevant experience in a similar position and has to have knowledge of wine. Grade 12 & Wine course with more than 1 years’ Wine and / or Sales experience. Speaks Afrikaans and English fluently. Job Description: Tasting Room Ambassador is responsible the day to day operations in the tasting room, this includes building brand awareness at tasting room, wine shows or functions, Always exceed guest expectations through service excellence. Identify new clients and client interests, ability to put clients at ease and interact with clients, able to identify new growth opportunities to increase brand and product awareness. Responsible for point of sale at tasting room.

Greet visitors and pour wines for tasting, Make recommendations to increase sales and services, Manage POS system and Office application systems, Complete all end of day and end of month reports. Support and monitor the tasting room areas to ensure that yearly budget projections are achieved. Monitor and assist with wine/non-wine inventories and general maintenance of the tasting room. Knowledge of brands being poured and company history. Assist with hospitality at special events as required. Job Requirements: Knowledge of the wine industry, excellent verbal and written communication skills, Strong analytical, Excellent organizational skills and the ability to follow through on projects with minimal supervision, Enthusiasm for wine in general and its products in particular, Relaxed, friendly and professional demeanour, Able to interact effectively with staff and other departments within the winery as well as agencies/vendors/customers. Only candidates with previous experience as Tasting Room Assistant will be considered.

Please contact Chantelle Johansson at

Common wine faults and procedures for handling them.

There is no generally accepted formal policy for dealing with wine bottle complaints in a restaurant, and the ultimate decision around the policy rests with each individual restaurant owner.

You can’t deal with faults with confidence if you don’t have a good command of the aromas of major wine faults. It is the Sommelier’s responsibility to make sure that there is always another staff member on duty in his/her absence who also have a sure ability to identify basic wine faults in bottled wines.

If a guest feels something is wrong, they should bring this to the waiter’s attention who should in turn let the sommelier or manager know. On a busy floor it’s wise to train waiters to be armed with a small tasting measure of the wine when they inform you. Each sommelier may handle this differently. Taste the wine and if you find it faulty, simply replace it with another bottle of the same wine. Make a note of this, and write the name of the fault and the date on the faulty bottle. Put the cork that the bottle came with (producers use this to reference cork suppliers) back in the bottle, and keep in a safe place in your store room where it can be collected by the supplier.

If you feel confident there is no problem you should let the customer know. At this stage perhaps suggest decanting the wine, and explain the elements in the flavor profile that you think may be bothering the guest. If they still insist that they’re not happy, try to persuade them to choose another producer (as it is more the style of the wine they’re not happy with).

If they prefer the same bottle, open a second and then sell the first bottle by the glass. They won’t have the option of returning that second bottle too, as you have advised them correctly, and they will have to pay for it.

We are in the business of caring for our customers, so therefore never force a guest to pay for something that is faulty. You do get customers that would drink ¾ of the bottle and then say it’s faulty, this I would not take back.

It is sensible to be less tolerant with younger wines, particularly with signs of oxidation (acetaldehydes and acetic acids / volatility), as there would be a high likelihood of the wine suffering from poor storage conditions (or even transport conditions) somewhere down the line, whereas with an older vintage it would be part of the wine’s expected maturing flavor profile. Darker colors in a young white wine and browning in reds can be a sign of premature ageing.

TCA (corked) however is consistent across wine types and the age and the physical condition of the cork is irrelevant.
The most common wine faults, with their basic aromatic indicators are:
– Cork taint (red & white): 2,4,6 tri-chloro anisole (TCA) – ‘Wet cardboard’ aroma.
– Volatile sulphur compounds (red & white): Stronger in white (Reductive characters, SLO’s) – H2S ‘rotten egg’ aroma.
– Acetaldehyde (red & white) – ‘Sherry’ aroma.
– Acetic acid (Red & White) – ‘Vinegar’ aroma.
– Ethyl acetate (red & white) – ‘Acetone’ aroma.
– Brettanomyces (Most common in red wines, but does sometimes occur in whites): 4-ethyl phenol (4-EP) ‘Band-aid’ aroma; 4-ethyl guaiacol (4-EG) ‘Leathery, sweaty’ aromas; isovaleric acid – Combination of aromas usually described as ‘barnyard’.
– Geosmin (red & white) – A musty/vegetal aroma – often described as ‘beetroot’.
– Higgo Jacobs –

2 x Junior Sommelier Positions for 2 Tsogo Sun`s Hotels based in the Western Cape

Minimum Experience or Qualification:

  • Must have at least 1 years’ experience as a Wine Steward or Junior Sommelier.
  • A proven interest and passion in wine.
  • Minimum Cape Wine Academy “Wines of The World” Course.
  • Good command of the English Language.
  • Highly presentable.
  • Able to work flexible hours, weekends and holidays.

Key Performance Objectives:

  • Enhancing the guest`s wine service experience.
  • To keep abreast of wine industry innovations, trends.
  • Serving wine & champagne and ensuring regular top up during service.
  • Ensure that all drinks are served in the correct glasses, at the correct temperature.
  • Maintaining a high profile and tactful personal manner with guests during service times.
  • Offering after dinner drinks.
  • Assist with monthly stock takes and investigate discrepancies in conjunction with Sommelier.
  • Ensure that cellars are stocked (within par level quantities) and communicating shortages and ‘out of stocks’ to Sommelier.
  • Monitor temperature and humidity on daily basis, to ensure ideal conditions for serving wine.


    1. Basic salary
    2. Medical aid option
    3. Uniform


  • Engaging guests in conversations about personal wine preferences, items on the food menu etc, resulting in wine recommendations, as opposed to mere order taking. This includes guided trips to the wine cellars.
  • Serving wine & champagne and ensuring regular top up during service
  • Ensure that all drinks are served in the correct glasses, at the correct temperature.
  • Maintaining a high profile and tactful personal manner with guests during service times
  • Offering after dinner drinks
  • Receiving, checking and unpacking orders from the Hotel Cellar – inform Sommelier of any discrepancies
  • Keep wine cellars in immaculate appearance and order.
  • Assist with monthly stock takes and investigate discrepancies in conjunction with Sommelier
  • Ensure that cellars are stocked (within par level quantities) and communicating shortages and ‘out of stocks’ to Sommelier
  • Monitor temperature and humidity on daily basis, to ensure ideal conditions for serving wine


  • Excellent knowledge about South African wines, wine regions and vineyards, varietals, vintages
  • Knowledge of bar set up and cocktails, beers, spirits
  • Knowledge of cellar management
  • Must be flexible
  • Fluent in spoken and written English
  • Excellent attention to detail
  • Excellent time management
  • Neat and presentable

Please contact: GEORGIO MELETIOU at








Sommelier – LUX Belle Mare Island Resort in Mauritius (Belle Mare – Mauritius – East coast)

This newly renovated 5*  property is looking for a qualified Sommelier, with either WSET Level 2  or a similar recognised qualification. The candidate should speak fluently English and preferably another languages such as French, German or Mandarin. He/She must be able to boost sales, manage stock, liaise with suppliers, train F&B personnel and host/conduct wine tastings for guests.


Salary ranges between US$ 1800,00 and US$ 2000,00 depending on qualifications.

Applicants can send their application to Girish Boyramboli Human Resources Manager at


Best Sommelier of SA 2016

A huge congratulations to the winner Gareth Ferreira and finalists, Jean-Vincent Ridon and Joakim Hansi Blackadder, as well as the other 7 contestants…you made us proud! We would like to thank everyone for their support during our first Best Sommelier of SA competition, which were held on Monday, 11th January at the Taj Cape Town. Special thanks to all our sponsors, we would have not been able to put such a successful event together without your support.

  • as our Media Partner – please see the following links for more info
  • The Taj Hotel Cape Town for hosting the event
  • Winterhalter for the glass washer
  • Liebherr for the wine fridge
  • Riedel Glassware
  • Reciprocal wines
  • The Really Great Brand Company (Veuve Clicquot)
  • 4G Wines
  • Nederburg Wines
  • Almenkerk
  • Creation
  • De Wetshof
  • Groot Constantia
  • Hamilton Russell Vineyards
  • Iona
  • Jordan
  • Journey’s End Vineyards
  • Mulderbosch
  • Oldenburg
  • Paul Cluver
  • Warwick
  • Yardstick

We would also like to state the following in order to clarify any confusion: The competition was run under the rules and regulations of the ASI (International Sommeliers Association) who own the sommelier world cup. The rule is that you may compete if you have worked in the country in the last 3 years. Gareth worked at the Saxon as a head sommelier up until 2014. Allowing him to compete. Gareth however now works with Master Sommelier, Ronan Sayburn who is the head sommelier and Gareth his assistant. Gareth was also the first South African to pass the Court of Master Sommeliers Advanced exam and therefore is more than qualified. This is also the case with the winners of the ASI competition in Spain and Poland, who both work in London. We’re excited, that for the first time a South African will competing in Argentina at the sommelier world cup.