Home News > March 2020 > Imbibe announces Personality of the Year 2020 winners

Imbibe announces Personality of the Year 2020 winners

On Monday night the best and brightest in the drinks industry gathered together at 12th Knot, Sea Containers, London, for the 10th Imbibe Personality of the Year Awards. We’re delighted to announce that Melania Battiston, one of our SWA judges, won the Hot Stuff award, and sommelier Elly Owen picked up Sommelier of the Year award. Congratulations to them both! Here’s why they’re the biggest stars of 2020…


Hot Stuff

Winner: Melania Battiston, Medlar

This award is aimed at spotting the up and coming talent in our industry and is always a difficult one to judge, spanning, as it does, multiple parts of the trade, and there being a wealth of young talent in the drinks industry (lucky us). Our winner comes from the world of wine, where the judges felt it can be harder to make waves and build a profile than perhaps the world of bartending where there are more opportunities to do so. In the end however, it really came down to attitude – when things had got tough and plans had gone awry this person’s ‘never give up’ approach shone through, something which the judges believe will take her even further than she has already come.
Runner up: Nicole Sykes, Satan’s Whiskers


Sommelier of the Year, sponsored by Gosset Champagne

Winner: Elly Owen, Paul Ainsworth, Cornwall

In an industry that can be more about the drink than about the people, it was Elly’s people-first approach to her job that got the judges’ vote. Her personality and love for hospitality, and the people within it shone through in her entry, alongside an inventive approach to inspiring people about wine, including wine silent discos and wine and music events also won praise from the judges.
Runner up: Bert Blaise, St Leonards, London

To celebrate the 10th anniversary two new awards were added: Trailblazer of the Year and an award celebrating 10 Years of Outstanding Achievement. Find out who went home with a gong in the full article here.

The Imbibe Personality of the Year Awards is sponsored by: Reyka Vodka, Estrella Galicia, Gosset Champagne, Laphroaig, Carpano, Disaronno, Schweppes