Sommelier Kevin Reilly (Cyrus, Quince) has successfully passed the Master Sommelier exam, joining the ranks of only 147 wine professionals to currently hold the title in the Americas and 227 worldwide.
The title is considered the "highest recognition of wine and spirits knowledge" in the hospitality industry, characterized by a grueling examination that most candidates fail multiple times. (For interested parties, the documentary Somm chronicles the intense preparation for the exam, including copious amounts of wine drinking, flash cards and palpable anxiety.) This year only seven of the 63 candidates to take the exam passed, and that's one of the largest graduating classes ever.
According to the Court of Master Sommeliers, "The Master Sommelier Diploma is the highest distinction a professional can attain in the beverage service industry. The Master Sommelier Diploma Examination consists of three sections: a verbal theory examination, a blind tasting of six wines in 25 minutes, and a practical service component which focuses on restaurant beverage service and salesmanship. Candidates must receive passing scores in each category in order to earn the highly coveted title of Master Sommelier."
The full list of wine rockstars is below:
- Brahm Callahan, Grill 23 & Bar (Boston, MA)
- William Costello, The Mandarin Oriental (Las Vegas, NV)
- Elyse Lambert, Maison Boulud (Montreal, QC, Canada)
- Jack Mason, Marta (New York, NY)
- Michael Meagher, Jackson Family Wines (Groton, MA)
- Kevin Reilly, Cyrus (Healdsburg, CA)
- June Rodil, Maguire Moorman Hospitality Group (Austin, TX)