Gabriel Lucas Dimmock from Mallorca has been crowned ‘Best Sommelier in Spain’ at the 26th edition of the Tierra de Sabor National Sommelier Championships in Madrid, which was held within the framework of the 34 Salón Gourmets.
“This achievement is the highlight of everything I set out to do in my profession. I have won all the championships that can be achieved in Spain, now I want to enjoy my work in a more leisurely and relaxed way.” said Gabriel. “My mother passed away last year and since then I have been focussed on winning this championship and I want to dedicate my victory to her."
Gabriel says he’s been studying and training for a long time to win the title.
“This would not have been possible without my wife and my family,” he admits.
In addition to all the hours of study and preparation, he has worked at Tristán restaurant and MarcFosh and is currently importing international wines to Spain.
Gabriel was named 'Best Sommelier in the Balearic Islands' in 2018 and 2019 and has also won the Ruinart Sommelier Challenge. He now enters the Spanish elite of wine specialists alongside Guillermo Cruz and Roberto Durán.
At 23 he was happily working as a flight attendant with Spanair, but after Flight 5022 from Barcelona–El Prat to Gran Canaria crashed on take-off in August 2008 everything changed.
“I lost my job and decided to start a restaurant, which is how I met Jaume Tauler, who was a salesman for Bodegas Raventós i Blanc. He told me I had the face of a sommelier and he always encouraged me to get into this trade.”
The economic crisis forced Gabriel to close his restaurant a few years later and in 2014 he moved to Barcelona to study at the CETT School of Hospitality & Tourism.
“Jaume Tauler died shortly after and I felt like he was guiding me. I will always be grateful for his unconditional support and for the help of Balearic Sommelier Association President, Daniel Arias, his colleagues Miguel Ángel Prieto, Patrick Paulen, Adam Perkal and so many others who work behind the scenes.”
Juliana González, who was named 'Best Sommelier in the Balearic Islands' in 2020, also represented the Balearics at the Tierra de Sabor National Sommelier Championships in Madrid and she says it was a daunting experience.
“This was my first time in the Madrid competition and I really enjoyed it,” she says. “I will make an effort to study more for the next one and now I know the format I won’t be so nervous.”