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Sommelier Championship 2024: Istria and Kvarner Edition

Sommelier Championship 2024 promises an engaging and skillful event as participants vie for the prestigious title.


Here’s a breakdown of how the championship will unfold: 

Qualifying Part (Quarterfinals):

  • Date and Venue: March 5 at the Ambasador Hotel in Opatija.
  • Activities: Participants will undergo a series of challenges to demonstrate their expertise.
  • Written Test: This evaluates their theoretical knowledge of sommelier practices.
  • Wine List Correction: Participants will show their skills by correcting a wine list, and testing their practical understanding of wine varieties and pairings.
  • Wine Description: Competitors will describe a given wine, highlighting their ability to articulate and assess sensory aspects. 
Sommelier Championship 2024


  • Number: Fourteen competitors are competing this year.
  • Background: Competitors hail from famous hotels, wineries, and restaurants in the Istria and Kvarner regions. 

Organizers and Patronage:

  • Host: The Croatian Sommelier Club.
  • Support: Patronage from the Tourist Board of Istria County and the Tourist Board of Kvarner.
  • Why it’s Interesting: 

Professional Excellence: The championship showcases a high level of professionalism among sommeliers. It emphasizes their knowledge of wines, service, and sensory evaluation.

Regional Representation: With competitors from esteemed establishments in Istria and Kvarner, the championship reflects the richness of the local hospitality and wine industry.

Educational Element: The written test and wine list correction provide an educational component, fostering continuous learning and improvement among participants.

Culinary and Cultural Experience: Beyond the competition, the event offers a platform to explore and appreciate the culinary and cultural offerings of the Istria and Kvarner regions.

Overall, the Sommelier Championship 2024 of Istria and Kvarner serves as a celebration of expertise. It also celebrates regional talent and the vibrant world of wine. It is an interesting and enriching experience for participants and spectators alike.  

Sommelier Championship 2024: Finals and Semi-Finals Unveiled at Morosini Grimani Castle

On Monday, March 25, the semi-finals with eight contestants and the final round will take place at Morosini Grimani Castle in Svetvinčenat. During the semi-finals, the contestants will show off their professional knowledge in various ways. They’ll tackle a written test, identify different wine personalities and positions, do blind wine tasting, and engage in other hands-on activities. 

Sommelier Championship 2024

The final, set to begin at 5:00 p.m., will unfold in front of the audience at Morosini Grimani Castle. The three finalists will show some interesting and fun skills. This includes serving sparkling wine, decanting wine, recognizing different types of wine, seeing errors in the wine list, and pairing wine with food. It’s going to be an enjoyable display of their talents, sure to keep the audience engaged.  

Vineyards and Wines of Istria and Kvarner: A Journey through Ancient Traditions and Unique Terroir

For centuries, people have been growing vines in the Croatian Istria and Kvarner regions. The reputation of wines from Croatian Istria dates back to ancient times. In the bay of Raš near Raklje, there’s a place called Kalavojna. It possibly derived from the Greek words for “good wine” (Greek: καλός: good, and οίνος: wine). Similarly, the name of Novi Vinodolski in the Kvarner region likely comes from the Latin words Vallis (valley) and vineyard (wine). These are just a few examples of the deep connection between the region and wine. 


Evidence of the long-standing tradition of enjoying wine here is many. They include sunken galleys with amphorae at the bottom of the sea and relics from the ancient wine trade in the Mediterranean. The environmental conditions for vine growth in Istria are unparalleled. The soils vary. Red soils in western and southern parts, transitioning to flysch slopes and ending in white soils in the hilly area of Čićarija in the northeast. 

The climate is also distinctive, changing from the Adriatic Sea coast to the interior of the peninsula. The coastal areas, showcase the karst cliffs descending from Učka peaks, the Vinodol Valley, and islands like Krk, Susak, Rab, and Pag. This unique combination of soil and climate has contributed to the exceptional quality of wines from this region. 

Celebrating Excellence in Wine and Terroir

As we eagerly anticipate the Sommelier Championship 2024 in Istria and Kvarner, the stage is set for a remarkable display of professional expertise and regional representation. The competition highlights the high standards of professionalism among sommeliers. It also serves as an educational platform that fosters continuous learning in the dynamic world of wines. 

Beyond the competition, the event offers an exploration of the culinary and cultural richness of Istria and Kvarner, providing participants and spectators alike with a truly great experience. 

Sommelier Championship 2024

Join us in celebrating the convergence of expertise and tradition at the Sommelier Championship 2024. Experience the world of Istrian and Kvarner wines. This is where history, terroir, and skill come together in a symphony of flavors. Whether a participant or a guest, this is an invitation to savor the culinary and cultural experiences waiting to be explored. Cheers to a journey through excellence and the vibrant world of wine! 

Your CTC Team

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