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Darius Namdar Wins 2017 UK Habanosommelier Final

Darius Namdar (of Mark’s Club) has won the annual UK Habanosommelier final, held at Hunters & Frankau’s London head offices on 30th October.


The prize at stake was not just the prestigious title of UK Habanosommelier 2017, but also an all expenses paid trip to Cuba to represent the UK at the International Habanosommelier final during the annual Habanos Festival, held in Havana during the last week of February 2018.


In a change from previous years, all of the candidates were all Masters of Havana Cigars and the competition was held over two separate days, rather than the previous single day.


The day of competition involved blind tasting a series of spirits and Havana cigars. They were then set a role play designed to assess their knowledge of Habanos cigars, their ability to recommend the correct cigars for specific occasions and their skill in cutting, lighting and serving the cigars that they had recommended. Finally, having cut, lit and presented a cigar to the guests, they were required to recommend a drink to compliment each of the cigars from a selected drinks menu.


The top two candidates from the day were then given two weeks to come up with an innovative cigar and drink pairing before returning to present to the judges, made up from the H&F board of directors and marketing department.


Jimmy McGhee (H&F Executive) said “The new format of the competition made it quite challenging for the candidates this year, but Darius was a very worthy winner. In particular his cigar and drink pairing was very strong and I can’t wait to see him perform in Havana.”


Darius Namdar said ““I am delighted to have won in the UK. I will put everything in to the Havana competition; I am happy enough to even be participating”


Everyone at Hunters & Frankau wishes Darius the best of luck in his effort to bring the trophy back to the UK.








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