Axelar Powered Sommelier Cellars

Axelar power sommelier cellars

Sommelier has completed research and is beginning development into an extension to the protocol that would enable executing strategies over the Axelar bridge protocol.

This implementation would use the Native Cosmos to EVM generalized message passing system on the Axelar bridge to enable Somm to execute strategies via Axelar.

Strategies on Ethereum L1 would continue to use the the Gravity Bridge system.

The Benefits of Axelar

  1. Axelar allows sommelier strategists to immediately get access to the full set of supported EVM chains via Axelar. This means Arbitrum and Avalanche would be immediately accessible and we get instant support new chains as Axelar launches new integrations.
  2. Minimizing Sommelier Validator requirements. Using Axelar means that validator requirements would become stable for the foreseeable expansion of the Sommelier protocol to many more strategies.
  3. IBC driven composability: Axelar powered cellars provide native composability with IBC and create a path towards deeper Cosmos native integrations with Sommelier.


  1. Dependence on security of Axelar: The liveness and security of the Axelar chain and protocol will become a dependency and risk to Cellar users. An attack on the Axelar protocol might make it so that a strategist is unable to rebalance a strategy or even enable a take over of the capabilities of sommelier governance and strategist functionality within the protocol. Sommelier Validators use the steward application to restrict function calls and ensure that their strong checks on important functions within the cellar. This can prevent adding potentially malicious protocols to the strategy or enable strategist to enter into harmful positions. This capability relies on the security of underlying bridge. If Axelar is compromised, the attacker will subvert the protections offered by steward and only defenses in the smart contract of Sommelier will remain. As a threat to a Cellar user, a corrupted Axelar is the same a corrupting the Sommelier validator set.
  2. Reduced control over speed and quality of strategy execution: Using a native bridge enables Sommelier protocol developers to tweak and update the performance of Steward to modify execution of transactions. The Axelar Corks will rely much more on the Axelar protocols and general improvements on the GMP system.


  1. Deploying a multichain Gravity bridge, Sommelier has done extensive research and prototyping of a multichain gravity bridge but there would be considerably more work and an substantial on going maintainence of the system in production
  2. Tendermint to EVM light clients. Teams like Polymer have made progress on developing system enable affordable Tendermint light clients to be embedded in EVMs as a building block towards full IBC compatibility. This system is very promising as an alternative to gravity bridge architectures but is still much further from production readiness.