Interview With A Sommelier – Beatrice Bessi
10th October 2023
The World of Wine is beautifully showcased by an army of talented Sommeliers, who help the consumer discover their next favourite bottle, understand the different regions and pair a delicious meal with the right Glass of Bubbly.
In this feature, I speak with a woman who has helped many people to discover the vast world of Wines and Sparkling Wines, her name is Beatrice Bessi, and let’s find out a bit about her life as a Sommelier.
Tell Us About Yourself
“Hello! My name is Beatrice Bessi, I’m Italian. I’ve worked in hospitality basically all my life for 24 years. I started because I needed money to pay for my studies etc… And I never left! I moved to the UK 7 years ago, to work at 67 Pall Mall as a Sommelier and pursue this career after I tried every role in hospitality. I fell in love and I never turned back. At the moment I’m Head Sommelier at Chiltern Firehouse, Advanced Sommelier CMS and working towards my Master Sommelier diploma.”
What Inspired You To Become A Sommelier?
“I was a Bartender for 12 years and I started to feel the pressure of my age, and my gender in my future in hospitality. I felt bartending was not enough to support me in the future and I wanted to be an empowered professional. I met my first future Head Sommelier by accident in Italy and I dreamt of being like her.
That was 12 years ago. From then I started slowly to study, pass courses and achieve a Master’s in Marketing in Wine in Italy. I then moved to the UK to pursue the CMS while working as a Sommelier. I hope soon to become a Master Sommelier.”
During Your Time As A Sommelier, What’s The Most Surprising Thing You’ve Learnt?
“That our guests bring me joy no matter what I have to go through during the day. I can be exhausted, and upset… But as soon the restaurant is open and we talk with our guests, I forget everything.”
How Often Do You Find Yourself Recommending English Sparkling Wine?
“Every day probably. We have a nice selection of English Sparkling wines and always offer one by the glass in rotation. English people definitely are starting to recognise these wines as similar quality to Champagne, and other countries too.”
In Your Professional Opinion, Out Of Champagne And Prosecco, Which Do You Think Does A Better Job With Complementing A Meal?
“Ohhhh, so many! Torn between a top quality Riesling Sekt from Germany and a Trento Doc!
What Advice Would You Give Inspiring Sommeliers?
“Keep trying to learn new things every day, never forget that we are Sommeliers for our guests and not for ourselves, be kind to peers and help each other out always.”
If You Sat Down For A Quiet Dinner, What Dish And Sparkling Wine Would You Choose To Enjoy Together?
“The same as above! I always have bottles like this at home, Trento Doc, a Sekt Riesling or a Nebbiolo Spumante from Piedmont. These are the bubbles that you can enjoy every day at home, with any type of food. I would choose Nebbiolo Spumante with a Roasted Pork for example. Sekt Riesling with an easy Saffron Risotto.”
Thank you, Beatrice, for sharing your words, knowledge and experiences with us and we at Glass of Bubbly wish you the very best for the future!
Images belong to Beatrice Bessi. Glass of Bubbly was granted permission to use them.
Champagne and Sparkling Wine Writer, Focused on Bringing the Exciting and Fascinating World of Bubbly to You.