Sophie Otton (Sydney, AU)
I am:
By day, I work as a wine consultant, sommelier, writer and judge. I am also the owner of She Loves You, a wine and cocktail bar in Newtown, which takes care of my evenings.
What inspired me to become a sommelier:
I managed to get a job at a beautiful wine bar in Adelaide, owned by Michael Hill Smith MW. The deal was, if I wanted to work there, I had to learn about wine. It was a challenge I relished, also a life changing experience.
My role model is:
Sue Hodder of Wynn’s Coonawarra. Sue gets the job done to the highest standard without fuss or carry on. A sophisticated, accomplished woman with a great sense of humour.
My greatest professional achievement is:
Chairing a wine show. After many years, I have realised my greatest asset is my palate. At the end of the day, it’s the most important part of understanding your product.
My favourite food and beverage match is:
Reminiscent of something out of Larousse Gastronomique, Colette and Catherine Faller of Domaine Weinbach cooked a traditional choucroute in their 17th century kitchen, matched with gloriously aged Alsatian whites.
What is the one piece of advice you would give to someone just starting their career in wine?
Try not to compare yourself with others too much. It’s better to focus on building your own repertoire of skills. You are your own best competitor.