‘I was 23 months old when I took part in my first ‘tasting’ on 14 July 1972. My parents had gone out somewhere, and my grandfather, who had a few barrels, got me to taste the wines with a pipette. I always say there’s something a bit Obelix about that story.’
Meet Fabrice Sommier. A veteran French sommelier with over 35 years of experience in luxury hotels and starred restaurants and a knowledge of wine that is unassailable, Fabrice is a force to be reckoned with.
The head sommelier at three-Michelin-starred Georges Blanc in Vonnas for 21 years, Fabrice was crowned Meilleur Ouvrier de France Sommelier (Best Sommelier in France) in 2007. He also earned the title of Master of Port in 2010 and went on to open his own Wine School in Mâcon in 2021. In 2013 and 2014, Fabrice won consecutive trophies for Best Habano Sommelier for his exceptional cigar pairings, becoming the only Frenchman and European to receive this prestigious award in Cuba. In April this year, Fabrice was announced as the new President of the Union de la Sommellerie Française (UDSF), just days after winning gold at Concours des Grands Vins de France Mâcon, an internationally renowned wine competition held annually in Mâcon, for his ‘Signature Sommelier Fabrice Sommier’ cuvées.
As you read through Fabrice’s impressive and extensive array of awards, accolades and accomplishments, you get the keen sense that this highly distinguished French craftsman is indeed very much like Obelix, the fictional strongman who gained legendary strength after falling into a cauldron of magic potion as a child—virtually invincible and unstoppable.
‘Wine is a combination of culture and encounters with people. I particularly care for food and wine pairing and for the bonding moments which come with these times of sharing.’
In 2018, Fabrice’s passion and skill led him to collaborate with French glassware brand Lehmann Glass to create an exclusive glassware collection—The F. Sommier Signature Collection. This collection was crafted to honour the art of winemaking and the tradition of wine tasting, designed to reflect the special moments of camaraderie that arise when these two crafts come together over a shared table, in a wine glass—that magical looking glass and mythical vessel that bridges divides and unites people, even if for a brief moment of thoughtful contemplation.
With a pragmatic approach and drive for excellence, the Lehmann F. Sommier Signature Collection combines the vision and expertise of two of France’s leading industry professionals, resulting in a glassware collection of immense versatility and functionality. Featuring a classic, timeless silhouette to suit all table settings and tasting moments, each glass is elegantly designed with clear-cut curves to enhance the aromas, flavours and pleasures of wine—especially red wine. The Ariane glass is recommended for delicate and aromatic red wines, while the Dionysos glass is ideal for full-bodied red wines. Finally, the Psyché and Hadrien glasses are universal glasses, suitable for all wine styles, including red wine, white wine and champagne.
Uniquely, the F. Sommier Collection also offers Ultralight handmade versions of each Ultralight machine-made glass to suit individual preferences and levels of usage—whether everyday, occasional, special or celebratory—making this Signature Collection the complete all-rounder for wine lovers seeking a premium glassware set to ennoble their tablescape and complement all occasions, fine wines and entertainment styles.
As the official Australian importer of Lehmann Glass since 2018, we are proud to introduce the exemplary glassware of the Lehmann Glass F. Sommier Signature Collection, available exclusively at Sally Hillman.
Beautifully ornamental, lightweight yet functional, Ariane provides a complete and immersive wine experience without the need for decanting.
Ideal for red wines, Ariane encourages fine wines to gently unravel along its precise and generous curves, layer by layer, piece by piece, from one magical moment in time to the next.
Its lavish size allows for full expression of delicate and complex perfume, amplifying each aromatic nuance for complete sensory and cerebral pleasure.
Ideal for: light-bodied red wines with delicate and floral notes such as Burgundy, Pinot noir and Gamay
If you like this glass, you might like its Ultralight handmade counterpart: Ariane 88cl
Dionysos combines state-of-the-art Ultralight technology with the finest crystal glass transparency to complement and celebrate all red wines.
Incorporating Ultralight finesse, balance and durability, its shapely bowl and sensually tapered lip delicately magnify the aromatic nobility of fine wines for unforgettable tasting moments and expériences.
Ideal for: full-bodied red wines with high tannins, such as Bordeaux-style red blends and Cabernet Sauvignon
If you like this glass, you might like its Ultralight handmade counterpart: Dionysos 78cl
For high performance and ultimate sophistication, the universal glass Psyché is the quintessential tasting tool for all champagne and fine wine styles.
Classically designed for versatility, Psyché’s broad and balanced bowl allows aromas to naturally unfurl as the narrowed lip captures the bouquet, effortlessly bringing to life the magical vision of wine from vine to table.
Ideal for: medium- to full-bodied red wines with savoury and spicy notes, such as Syrah, Malbec, Grenache and Sangiovese. Also suitable for champagne, white wines, and orange and rosé wines
If you like this glass, you might like its Ultralight handmade counterpart: Psyché 58cl
Hadrien 45 is a universal staple for all table settings and expériences and is designed to impress even the most discerning of wine glass connoisseurs.
Sturdy yet elegant, Hadrien 45 is the versatile choice for all styles of wine, champagne and levels of usage. The timeless design and robust build effortlessly capture and concentrate aromas as the glass flares upwards into the hips, exquisitely illustrating a picture of wine with each precise swirl.
Ideal for: all champagnes, white wines, orange wines, rosés and red wines.
We invite you to taste pleasure with Lehmann Glass and fall under the magical spell of the Fabrice Sommier Signature Collection here.