I've never done CrossFit: book a free trial

Member of the Month: Geoffrey Bentari

We've taken a little break, but the member of the month is back! This month, we met Geoffrey Bentari who has been a member of CrossFit GVA since 2017.

Where are you from and how long have you been in Geneva?
I'm from Aix-en-Provence/Sierre and I've been in Geneva for seven years now. I came here mainly for personal reasons.

What do you do for a living?
I'm head sommelier at a major Geneva palace.

How did you get started in this profession?
I studied catering and my vocation came during my studies.

What's a typical day like for you?
I start my day at 10am and finish between 11pm and 1am. Fortunately, there's a rest period between 4 and 6 pm. I take advantage of this to do some sport, but I can also indulge in a game of pétanque. If I took a nap during the break, I wouldn't have the same energy. It also allows me to clear my head.

How long have you been practising CrossFit?
Two years.

Why did you start?
I had a trigger and the ambition to progress in the sport. For years, I'd been training on my own, probably doing certain movements badly. I set out with the idea of finishing as tired as possible. I've made a lot of progress thanks to the advice of coaches and training programs. They help us build endurance, speed and strength. It also allows us to relax, which for me is vital.

What frustrates you the most during training?
When certain repetitions take me further away from my goal... CrossFit is built like a puzzle, it's a constant process. It takes a long training journey to reach maturity. It can be frustrating not to reach the top right away...

What progress are you most proud of?
I don't like to flatter myself... In my work, I'm often too demanding with myself because I know that nothing can ever be taken for granted. During WODs, there are moments when you're euphoric, then you cry with pain and finally with joy. It's these intense moments that I look for in team sports.

What other activities do you do apart from CrossFit?
I've become a Sunday farmer, looking after my vines.

How do you become a good sommelier?
The qualities of a good sommelier are similar to those of a good bottle: culture, history, a little sociology, a lot of love, humility and listening. It's a human profession: we're the link between the winemaker and the chef, between the plate and the glass. Things are more emotional and sensory. I followed this path because I didn't know what to do when I left school!

Are you passionate about wine?
Yes! A bottle of wine is more than just a low-alcohol, colorful, aromatic liquid. For us (in our civilization), it represents 2,000 years of history. It's geo viticulture, oenology, service, staging and communication. It's not a technician's job, but one of communication and transmission above all. To be able to tell a story before the plate and the glass arrive, you need to know your references inside out, but you also need to understand the customer's expectations and preferences (not mine).

What is the most expensive bottle of wine you sell to President Wilson and how much does it cost?
A "Screaming Eagle, Napa valley, California, USA 2003" for CHF 11,000! It's the most expensive bottle I've sold in my career. Just so you know, I've still got one left 😉

Tell us more about your work as a "Sunday farmer"?
In my spare time, I tend a dozen rows of Pinot Noir vines on the Côteaux Sierrois in Valais. That's enough to produce 250 liters of wine every year.

Not sure if CrossFit is for you? Come and take a free trial class, discover our 2 gyms and ask us all your questions.

Visiting our region? Come and drop in at one of our two venues

CHF 30 / drop-in or CHF 40 with a box tshirt