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Gunnar Tietz returns to the catering trade


The experienced sommelier becomes host at Carl & Sophie on the banks of the Spree in Berlin

BERLIN. To speak of a comeback is not really correct, because Gunnar Tietz never left. The exceptional talent continued his impressive career beyond the restaurant scene. And yet: the Berliner-by-choice, who has won the "Sommelier of the Year" award several times, is now returning to the capital's gastronomy scene as the new restaurant manager at Carl & Sophie after almost ten years. "I'm really looking forward to giving guests at Restaurant Carl & Sophie a good time," says Gunnar Tietz. The pleasure is certainly mutual.

Gunnar Tietz's bottle parties and wine recommendations at the former Michelin-starred restaurant "first floor" at the Hotel Palace are still legendary today. Born in Prenzlau, he started out in 1990 with an apprenticeship as a restaurant specialist at Peter Frühsammer's Berlin Michelin-starred restaurant "An der Rehwiese". Tietz's degree was already the best of his year. He then moved to the Michelin-starred restaurant "Bamberger Reiter" and, after training as a sommelier, joined the Michelin-starred restaurant "first floor" at the Hotel Palace Berlin in 1998. Here, he quickly worked his way up to head sommelier and, as such, expanded the wine list to an impressive 1,500 items.

His engaging host qualities and exceptional wine knowledge earned him many awards. First, Sommelier Magazin honoured his work with the title of "Best International Wine List in Germany 2006", followed by numerous prestigious awards from the Aral Schlemmer Atlas to Gault-Millau as "Sommelier of the Year". Germany's 100 best chefs also named him best sommelier in 2012, while the German Wine Institute recommended Tietz's innovative selection as "Best German Wine Gastronomy" in 2015.

After a total of 25 years in top gastronomy, Gunnar Tietz left the "first floor" in 2015 to break new ground. For two years, he put his knowledge and passion to good use as a meat, wine and flavour ambassador for Otto Gourmet. At the same time, he became the gourmet sponsor of all Aida ships, a role he still fulfils today. Gunnar Tietz has spent the last seven years working in wine sales.

Now the 54-year-old is once again looking forward to interacting with guests and working in a team with the kitchen. "I missed the direct reactions of guests to the interplay of wine and cuisine," says Gunnar Tietz, "when I recommend wines for purchase, I'm not there when they're tasted. It's simply a great pleasure to guide you through an entire evening with wines." Together with head chef Martin Höse, Gunnar Tietz will continue to develop the creative culinary concept of the restaurant on the former Meierei site from 1890 and redesign the wine list.

The Carl & Sophie restaurant has 60 seats inside and 50 outside and is open on weekdays from 11.30 a.m. to 1.00 a.m. and at weekends from 12.00 p.m. to 1.00 a.m.

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