Hugo d'Houwt Authentication & Cellar Management, Europe
Hugo started waiting tables as a part time job while he was studying politics. Eventually that part time job became a full time job. He began as a simple waiter and climbed one step at a time to top positions in Michelin starred restaurants. It didn’t take long for the bug to bite, being around wine all the time. So he decided to start learning more and take classes. Interestingly enough he found that sommelier classes in France were somewhat narrow-minded and not so open to the marvels of the New World.
He then decided to take it further and to apply for the Court of Master Sommeliers in London. Now a Certified Sommelier by the Court and studying for the Advanced exam, he runs a wine bar in Dijon, Burgundy, after 12 years of fine dining experience. He’s also eying at the IMW programme. He stumbled upon Maureen Downey’s project at the very beginning and was one of the early believers.
He’s now in the process of becoming a TCM Authenticator in order to give his contribution to solving the wine fraud problem. When he’s not tasting or hidden behind piles of books, he runs a study group for wine students totaling near 3500 members worldwide.