Mira Šemić, sommelier, Slovenia
Director of Gault&Millau Slovenia
There is no life without water, and there is no joy of life without wine – this is a famous saying by sommelier Mira Šemić, the first wine academic from the Balkans. She was given that title by the WSET in London (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) based on her work on Rebula, a white grape that grows only around the border of Italy and Slovenia.
Born in Banja Luka, Šemić came to Ljubljana as a student, fell in love with good wines and started her career as a sommelier. But first she gained quite a bit of entrepreneurship experience, visited restaurants around the world and tasted wines. Back in 1990s, in the centre of Ljubljana she opened the prestigious Monroe restaurant, a game changer on the Slovenian culinary scene because it was the first to offer tasting menus and a wide selection of wines by the glass.
Today she is still passionately dedicated to gastronomy, which she finds one of the key assets for the development of tourism in Slovenia. She loves to share experience, and her educational programmes – Little Wine School and Wine School for Young People – are always sold out. In recent years she has been the director of the Gault&Millau guide for Slovenia.