Tan Ying Hsien, MW
Tan Ying Hsien’s passion for wine started in 1983 while pursuing law studies in the United Kingdom where he picked up tasting and studying wine as a hobby. A corporate and banking lawyer for over 20 years, he made a career switch in 2009 to become a wine journalist, speaker and educator. He then established Taberna Wine Academy in 2010 to create a space where he could share wines and knowledge with other wine enthusiasts.
Ying Hsien subsequently enrolled in the prestigious Master of Wine programme and became the first Singaporean Master of Wine in 2015 after an arduous six years. Ying Hsien is one of 419 Masters of Wine in the world and also one of the first two Asian men to attain the qualification.
As wine consultant, Ying Hsien oversees Saint Pierre’s wine program. This involves curating the wine list of over 2,300 bottles and ensuring the currency of the wines by the glass and variety of half bottle selections. He also provides regular staff training through blind tastings and thematic tutorials The training is based on on three building blocks: understanding the technicalities of wine characteristics, quality levels and styles from different origins, using that knowledge to understand how the wine will enhance or complement the restaurant’s food; and to use the former two to respond incisively to customers’ needs, taking into account different tastes and preferences.
Aside from his consultancy service, Ying is a frequent judge for international wine competitions, including the International Wine Challenges held in Singapore, Hong Kong International Wine & Spirits Competition, Decanter Asia Wine Awards, UWWR Russian Wine Challenge, Sydney International Wine Competition and the Concours de Mondial.