Is ChatGPT Gearing Up to Become a Sommelier?


Are wine professionals intimidated by ChatGPT, a chatbot that recently passed three Master Sommelier theory exams? Launched in November, 2022, ChatGPT is made to respond to questions with a detailed answer or offer a solution. This advanced software is developed by OpenAI in partnership with Microsoft and is powered by GPT-4 technology which can exhibit human-like performance on various benchmarks.

The Master Sommelier Exam is split into theory and practical sections, which are rigorously studied by wine professionals to pass. ChatGPT’s march success showed that they can score 92% on the court of Master Sommelier Test, 86% on the Certified Sommelier Exam and 77% on the Advanced Sommelier Exam. However, ChatGPT must also pass the tasting section of the exam in order to receive a full master sommelier.

Alex Sarovich is the executive wine director at Healdsburg’s Little Saint. He does not think that ChatGPT could replace sommeliers just yet, saying “I don’t think there’s a robot in the world that can replace a meaningful human interaction.” He believes that there is still a need for personable sommeliers in the industry, who help others understand the complexity and beauty of wines.

However, ChatGPT’s success should not be ignored. According to Sarovich, their success proves that anyone can pass the theory part of the exam if they study, which should be taken as a favorable sign. Additionally, programmers are thinking of unique methods in order to equip robots with more sensibility, even allowing them to evaluate wines using analytical tools.

OpenAI and Microsoft are dedicated to biasing natural language processing to appreciate the nuances of human conversation. And while ChatGPT cannot be considered a sommelier quite yet, who knows what the future may hold?

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OpenAI is a technology laboratory comprised of an elite group of artificial intelligence researcher from around the world who are dedicated to advancing artificial intelligence through their powerful and adaptable models, platforms and technology. They have achieved numerous breakthroughs and have been able to develop technology for the benefit of society.

Alex Sarovich is the executive wine director at Healdsburg’s Little Saint. She is a globally-recognized wine professional with several years of experience in wine education, consulting, and curating. She served as the National Tasting Chair for the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas, and has a Masters in Education from Stanford University. She enjoys teaching others about wines and helping them discover its bewitching qualities.

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