Ladies Night: 5 Chefs and 5 Sommeliers 26. September 2022

Ladies Night: 5 Chefs and 5 Sommeliers

The women’s evening has already become a tradition at the Taste the Mediterranean festival, where women teams up, putting their hands together in the kitchen and impress the guests.

An international team of great chefs invited by the Mediterranean Women Chefs platform will cook in the Split restaurant Zora bila, run by Sandra and Dane Tahirović, on October 7. In the kitchen, they will host French chef and consultant Flora Mikula, pastry chef Keiko Nagae from Paris, chef Vesna Miletić from Zagreb restaurant Tač and Gabriela Filca, a young assistant to chef Deni Srdoč from restaurant Nebo, Rijeka.

Selection of wines from Kvarner region will be served with their dinner, selected and guided by five Kvarner sommeliers.

Meet those young women who know which wine suits best with each course, which glass to pour wine into, how to properly interpret a wine label and open a bottle of champagne, and much more related to the ‘drink of the gods’.


She has a master degree in cultural studies and, with her lifelong wine education, she successfully merges wine and philosophy. Her motto is – Wine is life.

She is a sommelière with the third level of education and a future trainer in the Croatian Sommelier Club (Hrvatski Sommelier Klub). Her target is to learn and taste every day something new and unknown to her palate until then.


Her hometown is Rijeka, in Croatia but she has spent 17 years in Italy, where she graduated in foreign languages and literature and in the meanwhile fell in love with the world of wine.

She is a sommelière owning the WSET Level 3 award in wines, the ASI International Gold diploma and she got the third place in the National Croatian Sommelier Championship 2021.

Working in various luxurious hotels around Croatia her experience as a sommelière improved and now, with her newly opened company VINNER, she is organizing wine workshops, educations and wine tours with the purpose of sharing her knowledge merging in a different and professional way the two biggest passions of her life: languages and wine.

Martina Škarica, Lucija Matijević, Ines Matić Matešković, Marinela Mrkonja, Monika Neral

Five Kvarner sommeliers: Martina Škarica, Lucija Matijević, Ines Matić Matešković, Marinela Mrkonja and Monika Neral. Photo: Rino Gropuzzo


She inherited the love towards wine from her father and grandparents that had small vineyards in the Croatian region Dalmatia, where they used to produce wine, olive oil and vegetables for their own needs. She seriously started to educate herself about, at the beginning, Croatian wines in 2015 working at Villa Ariston hotel close to her mentor, sommelier and brother, Marko Škarica. After that, with her experience in Draga di Lovrana hotel she discovered international wines and got the second level of education in the Croatian Sommelier Club (Hrvatski Sommelier Klub). As we all know, wine is accompanied by food, so in her free time she likes having good meals and a fine glass of wine.

This year she had the honor to be a taster and promotor of the variety Malvazija at the Vinistra competition and to be part of the Croatian Sommelier Club committee.

Her target is to visit always different wineries, learn and taste something new every day.

Currently she works in Hotel IkadorNobilion restaurant, waiting for the next level of education and many future wine workshops.


Assistant professor at the Faculty of Law in Rijeka and graduated sommelière in the Croatian Sommelier Club (Hrvatski Sommelier Klub), her ambition is to spread the wine culture through wine educations.

Her career as a sommelière started in 2016 and since then she organizes many workshops, wine tastings and she attends relevant wine presentations and conferences. She is an educator of the Croatian Sommelier Club, the Croatian ambassador of the Bottega sparkling wine and the author of the Wine diary (Vinski dnevnik) on the Stilueta web portal.


After her master in economics, she recently found out her love for wine, leading her to the achievement of becoming a sommelière thanks to WSET (Wine and Spirit Education Trust), one of the most prestigious global organization that provides education and qualifications in wines and spirits.

She is a member of the Croatian Sommelier Club (Hrvatski Sommelier Klub) and she took part as a taster in the prestigious international competition Vinistra.

Her aim is to stimulate the awareness and interest towards the world of wine among young people.