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Sommelier Dirake-rit Kotchawong: "I still have to tell my family I'm a wine taster." (Photo by Kosaku Mimura)

Local wine experts become toast of Thailand

Thai sommeliers break through at top restaurants despite lack of tradition

JOHN KRICH, Contributing writer | Thailand

BANGKOK -- Three years ago, Kodchakarn Panpotong had never touched alcohol. She has yet to visit a winery. Despite long experience in the restaurant trade, she hardly seemed a promising choice to recommend wines at Eat Me, a mainstay of Bangkok's fine dining scene.

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