Sydney | Published on 16th June 2017 at 8:06

The Qantas Rockpool Sommeliers have been ‘nose-deep’ over the past four days blind tasting and reviewing 1,300 Australian wines and Champagne that will go onboard domestic and international flights and in the lounges. Around 250 wines will be chosen.

As the Annual week of Qantas Wine Tasting wraps up, a group of Qantas Frequent Flyers were given the rare opportunity to be part of the selection process for the first time. The Frequent Flyers, all members of Qantas epiQure, Qantas’ online wine community, blind-tasted a selection of different wines and nominated their favourite red and white varietal.

After much deliberation, the group chose Eden Hall Reisling, Eden Valley 206 and Brokenwood Pinot Noir, Beechworth 2015 as their top picks. The ‘Frequent Flyers’ Choice’ will feature on board in the domestic and international Business cabins for a limited period over the next 12 months, and will be available soon to purchase through Qantas epiQure.

Qantas Creative Director, Food, Beverage & Service, Neil Perry who leads the team of Qantas Rockpool Sommeliers said while the bulk of the selection would be left to the experts, it was exciting to involve some of the airline’s most loyal flyers who love food and wine.

“We’re always looking for innovative ways to provide an enjoyable experience for the millions of Frequent Flyers who travel with us every year, and we are pleased the ‘Frequent Flyers’ Choice’ wines have been chosen by people who are as passionate as we are about food and wine,” said Mr Perry.

The Qantas Rockpool Sommeliers features 16 highly experienced sommeliers and mixologists. As well as wine, they select spirits and non-alcoholic beverages and create monthly cocktail recipes for the lounges. Among the group is one of only two Master Sommeliers in Australia, Sebastian Crowther, as well as Head Bartenders of Rockpool restaurants around the country.

Qantas invests over $25 million dollars in the Australian wine industry every year and is proud to showcase both boutique Australian wineries as well as the iconic drops that have defined Australia’s global winemaking reputation.

Qantas is the third largest purchaser of wine in Australia and invests significantly in training cabin crew so they are equipped with the knowledge to recommend wine to customers subject to their preferences and dining choices. More than 300 cabin crew are currently trained as onboard sommeliers and over 2000 crew have completed an introductory, intermediate or advanced level of wine training.

Curated by expert wine buyers including one of only 24 Masters of Wine in Australia, the Qantas epiQure cellar gives Frequent Flyer members the opportunity to enjoy red wines and white wines served in First and Business at home.