The Academy of Food and Wine Service (AFWS) is inviting entries from hospitality employers and staff for its front-of-house AFWS Annual Awards 2011, being held at London’s Butcher’s Hall on 18 October 2011.

The Awards, which have been held by the Academy since 1988, celebrate and reward inspiring people and organisations whose hard work is raising the standard and profile of food and beverage front-of-house service and also recognises the stars of the future. Winners of the individual awards receive valuable educational travel bursaries or work experience at top establishments in the sector.

Several new categories have been introduced this year including one in recognition of wine excellence in pubs, and a new award for sommeliers.

“The AFWS Annual Awards are going from strength to strength but this year we are broadening their appeal to include the pub sector, whose wine offering and knowledge is becoming increasingly important to their business. This award also reflects the Academy’s new strategic partnership with the British Institute of Innkeeping (BII),” says AFWS chairman Nick Scade.

The new L’Academie de Lanson Taste Award will be given in recognition of sommeliers who understand and appreciate different styles of Champagne, enabling them to make an informed recommendation to customers based on taste rather than brand. The winner will receive a trip to the Clos de Lanson vineyard in Champagne for the 2012 harvest and will meet the Chef de Cave and taste Champagnes from the Lanson International range.

The Worshipful Company of Innholders and Maison Louis Jadot Sommelier Award will be given to a sommelier who has demonstrated particular dedication and commitment to sommellerie or who has achieved something outstanding over the past 12 months. The winner will receive an educational visit to the Burgundy region with a visit to Louis Jadot’s Château des Jacques estate and Jadot’s own cooperage.

In association with the BII, the Pub Wine List of the Year Award recognises establishments that can demonstrate they have raised the performance of their wine business by improving their knowledge, selection and selling of wine. The winning pub will receive a case of Charles Heidsieck Champagne along with a free wine list consultation with this year’s UK Sommelier of the Year Yohann Jousselin.

The Adriano Ramos Pinto Travel Award offers a two-day trip to the Douro Valley in Portugal to the entry with the best answers to a short questionnaire on Port; the New Zealand Wine Travel Award offers a trip to the International ProWein Trade Fair in Messe Düsseldorf in March 2012 for the entry with the most complete answers to a questionnaire about New Zealand wine, and The Savoy Educational Trust Phillip Thornton Award offers exclusive work experience at the Jumeirah Carlton Tower in London to the best nomination for a student or junior member of staff.

The Virgin Rising Star Award is offered to up and coming front-of-house stars who are showing outstanding talent, aptitude and initiative. The winner will be offered work experience with the Virgin Limited Edition suite of businesses.

Other award categories include Company of the Year, College of the Year and the prestigious Dalmore Award for Excellence, presented last year to David Galetti, head sommelier at London’s Le Gavroche. The winner of the 2011 award will receive a bottle of The Dalmore whisky and a day with the Dalmore master distiller.


Entries close on 9 September 2011.


For further press information please contact Linda Pettit at Tilburstow Media Partners on 01737 82372, mobile 07973 789853 or email Alternatively call Helen Glen at the Academy of Food & Wine on 020 8661 4646 or email


Editor’s notes

About the Academy
The Academy of Food and Wine Service (AFWS), established in 1988, is the professional body for food and beverage front-of-house service in the hospitality sector. It is dedicated to improving the status and awareness of food and beverage service as a viable career choice, raising standards across the industry, and encouraging teamwork to foster good relations with other industry sectors. The Academy can offer advice and training to anyone following, or considering, a career as a sommelier, wine waiter, waiter, bar manager or restaurant manager.

As well as running its high profile awards such as UK Sommelier of the Year and UK Restaurant Manager of the Year the Academy was this year closely involved in the making of the BBC2 programme Michel Roux’s Service. As a result the Academy was awarded a prestigious industry Catey Award for the marketing and social media campaign it conducted surrounding the programme, designed to capitalise on interest in front of house as a career. Training material, advice and service tips are available on the Academy’s website at



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