Sam Chong

Senior Sommelier

Best Sommelier Greater China Competition 2010 - Champion

An unfortunate incident as a young waiter (he served a customer a bottle of 1996 Chateau Margaux instead of the requested 1994 vintage) had prompted Sam Chong to learn more about wine. He is now a sommelier at Hotel Nikko Hong Kong and is doing what he loves – tasting great wines with wine-lovers from all over the world.

1. What got you started in becoming a Sommelier?

It all began with an unfortunate event at work around 6 years ago, when I was still working at a lounge as a waiter. A guest ordered a bottle of Chateau Margaux 1994 and since no manager/captain was on duty, I was assigned to serve him (even I had absolutely no wine knowledge!). It was later found out that I served a Chateau Margaux 1996 (instead of the requested 1994), and the hotel had to compensate $1000 to the guest. That experience encouraged me to learn more about wine, which like many others, I also fell in love with.

2. What is your most memorable wine & why?

Domaine du Pegau Cuvee da Capo, Chateauneuf-du-Pape, France. I had this wine at my first wine dinner at work and will never forget the richness of the wine!

3. Any obscure grape varietals caught your attention lately?

Blaufrankisch from Austria. Its quality has been a pleasant surprise!