Sommelier, Ivan Sneler

Fascination with wines

Ivan Sneler began his first day of work at the Esplanade Zagreb hotel 35 years ago as a waiter. With years of experience and dedication he started to pay more and more attention to wines. In 1993, when the restaurant Taverna Croatica was under reconstruction, the hotel was in search of a sommelier. The restaurant had a wine cellar overflowing with more than 300 of the world’s most known and exclusive wines. Impressed and fascinated with such a great selection of wines, Sneler suddenly became a very curious man! Without a flicker of hesitation, he spoke to the Food & Beverage Manager and explained his desire to become a sommelier. And that’s how it all began...

Back then, this profession was almost unknown. Following extensive training, Ivan Sneler proudly became the very first professional sommelier in Croatia.

Recommended by Ivan Sneler

While he was still a young waiter, he was always impressed with the grace of
certain wines and their distinctiveness compared to other wines. His interest in wines grew stronger and more specific after a presentation held by a certain famous Californian winemaker who had been staying at the Esplanade at that time.

The principal of his work as a sommelier is within the area of wine procurement, storage, wine cellar rotation, and to provide expert advice to guests. Ivan Sneler is also responsible for the development of the wine list and for the delivery of wine service as well as providing training to restaurant staff. He works alongside the culinary team to pair and suggest wines that would best complement each particular food menu item.

When guests travel around the world they want to visit and experience new cultures, customs and try some traditional meals combined with domestic wines. Therefore, Ivan Sneler usually recommends excellent white wines from the region near Zagreb, or from Slavonia and Istria, while the best red wines come from the Dalmatian coast.

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