It’s a tough job, but somebody’s got to do it… tasting wines, hobnobbing with celebrities, travelling around the Cape node sharing your knowledge, attending the country’s top wine auctions with a directive to purchase wines of repute… it’s all in a day’s work for Regional Sommelier Georgio Meletiou – and it couldn’t have happened to a nicer guy.
Georgio started out in life as a paramedic, but with dreams to work in a restaurant and a move to Cape Town he applied for a job as a casual waiter at the Lord Charles in Somerset West, a move that has seen him spend the last 20 years in the hospitality industry, 14 of those in wine. After completing a Diploma in Wine Studies and the Sommeliers course through the Cape Wine Academy he worked under a master sommelier for seven months in Italy before returning to open the wine shop at Sun City in conjunction with Spier. Leaving Johannesburg in 2011 to consult, he then joined Tsogo Sun in 2013.
His journey in wine has given him the opportunity to do tastings for some interesting people, including the likes of Oprah Winfrey, Tina Turner, Sir Cliff Richard, Morgan Freeman, the late astronaut Neil Armstrong and Enrique Iglesias, and to do food and wine presentations for BBC Food.
He has also been on the #TsogoWine panel for the past 3 years as Tsogo Sun participated in the two most prestigious wine auctions in South Africa – the Nederburg Auction and the Cape Winemakers Guild Auction. Having participated in the auctions himself for the past 14 years, he has a knack for purchasing some of the rare South African wines at the best possible prices.
With a job that’s the envy of most, Georgio is humble and grateful. “I realise I’m very fortunate to do what I do and it’s a privilege – not work. The best part of my job is being able to have working relationships with some of the best winemakers in the world, and if that’s not enough I get to taste their wines too,” says Georgio.
Georgio’s motto in life sums it up: “Enjoy life today. Yesterday is gone, tomorrow may never come.”
If you’d like to experience the selection wines, handpicked just for you, join Georgio in the intimate wine room at Stella Café & Bar, located at Southern Sun The Cullinan, and let him guide you through a journey of unique tastes.
To find out more, click here www.tsogosun.com/the-cullinan/restaurants-bars/stella-cafe-bar