Trafford College student Alex Finn will be rubbing shoulders with some of the world’s finest wine experts after gaining a place on a coveted sommelier course in France.
Alex is one of only 12 people who will embark on the two-year course in September at the internationally renowned Lycée hôtelier de Tain l’Hermitage in the Rhône Valley.
During his time there, he will join an elite team of trainee sommeliers to develop their knowledge under the guidance of lecturer and mentor Monsieur Christophe Santos, who has worked in some of France’s most exclusive Michelin starred restaurants.
Alex, who is fluent in French, has completed a BTEC subsidiary diploma in hospitality and a Level 3 diploma in food and beverage supervision during his time at Trafford College.
The 18-year-old said: “I was really happy when I found out I’d been accepted as people who have studied there have gone on to work in some of the finest restaurants around the world.
“Studying at Trafford College has helped me so much to build a foundation of hospitality and service skills, as well as helping to build my confidence.
“I’m really looking forward to getting started. Of course there’s a side of me that’s a bit nervous going to live in another country, but this is such a fantastic opportunity for me.”
The Lycée is a specialist live-in hotel school and specialist wine college which boasts partnerships with a variety of key suppliers, especially in the wine industry. It produces some of the world’s most talented sommeliers and bar tenders each year, as well as waiting staff and chefs.
Trafford College has forged strong links with the prestigious hospitality school through student exchange programmes, and Alex spent two weeks there earlier this year with a group of fellow hospitality students learning about wine and the journey from ground to glass.
Hospilatity lecturer John Pitt said: “After we started working with the Lycée, it was always our goal to have one of our students to gain a place there. We’re extremely proud of Alex’s achievement and he thoroughly deserves this opportunity.”
Alex has also received a certificate and wine gift set from C&O Wines in Timperley, who work closely with the college’s Aspire Restaurant on special wine evenings, in recognition of his achievement.