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A Taste Above

The Periwinkle Foundation’s Iron Sommelier 2018, presented by AUTOSOL, attracts over 600 guests for tastings, fun, and charity


PHOTO CREDITS: ​Dave Rossman

The Celebration

The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa welcomed Periwinkle Foundation board members, supporters, and wine aficionados—600 in all—to the Periwinkle Foundation’s Iron Sommelier 2018 presented by AUTOSOL. The competition featured 14 of Houston’s finest sommeliers showing off their awe-inspiring expertise for the title of Iron Sommelier. Sean Beck and John Clutterbuck chaired the vibrant event.

The Story

Competitors were rated on the wine’s they selected to match their unique themes; presentation; creativity; and knowledge. The expert panel of judges was made up of Master Sommeliers Craig Collins, Nick Hetzel, and June Rodil. Guests mingled, sipped wine, and indulged in creative pairings assembled by the competitors’ restaurant groups and The Houstonian Hotel, Club & Spa while the judging took place.

The Moments

First-time competitor Julie Dalton of Mastro’s was the big winner, taking home the title of Iron Sommelier 2018 for her impressive Drink Gneiss Schist theme featuring wines that come from metamorphic soil types. Gneiss and schist refer to shale and slate. Julie also now has the distinction of being the first woman to earn the title of Iron Sommelier. Other titles and their winners were: First Runner Up – Justin  Vann of Theodore Rex and Public Services Wine & Whiskey; Second Runner Up – Matt Crawford of State of Grace and La Lucha; Underwriter Tasting, Best Presentation – Adele Corrigan of 13 Celsius and Justin Vann; People’s Choice – Matt Crawford.

The nail-biting event raised a record $320,000 for Periwinkle’s camps; arts; and survivor programs for children, teens, and families living with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses.

Guests: Sean Beck; Julie Cannoy and Doug Osburn; John and Anne Clutterbuck; Cyndi and Steve Ford; Keith Goldston, MS; David Keck, MS; Jack Mason, MS; Bobby Matos; Steven McDonald; Marilyn and Louis Mogas; Melinda and Matt Mogas; Erin and Eric Otness; Drs. Jayne and Carlos Rivera; and Randa and KC Weiner.

About the Periwinkle Foundation   

The Periwinkle Foundation develops and provides programs that positively change the lives of children, young adults, and families living with cancer and other life-threatening illnesses and are cared for at Texas Children’s Hospital. Funds raised through the Iron Sommelier help support the Periwinkle Camps, Arts, and Survivor Programs that serve more than 14,000 children, teens, and families. This is made possible by a collaborative community of 20,000 supporters with a reach of more than 12 million impressions worldwide.

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