Behind the label - IWEG News and Events Sep. 24, 2020

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Spanish Wine Scholar 

Class starts October 1st!

Special enrollment offer at $995 (regular price $1,100)

The Spanish Wine Scholar provides current, accurate and in-depth information on the wines and wine regions of Spain. Developed and administered by the Wine Scholar Guild (WSG), the course is aimed at advanced students of wine whether professionals or serious wine hobbyists. The course will taught by IWEG's Spanish wine specialists and WSG approved instructors Kim Berdusco DipWSET and Caitlin Ferguson DipWSET.

The Spanish Wine Scholar provides detailed coverage of Spanish wine regions, as well as an introduction to Spanish history, geography, viticulture and winemaking. You will:

  • Develop specialist knowledge of the DO / DOCa regions in seven sessions involving: Green Spain; The Duero River Valley; La Rioja; The Ebro River Valley / Central Mediterranean Coast; Cataluña; La Meseta / Islands and Andalucia
  • Appreciate the cultural context of Spanish wine
  • Consider the vineyard and winery factors that contribute to wine styles
  • Taste a curated range of Spanish wines specially prepared for this course by IWEG WSG authorized instructors

The fall course comprises of seven interactive theory classes delivered remotely via the video conferencing platform Zoom on Thursdays, October 1st to November 12th from 6:30PM - 8PM. An in-person experiential tasting workshop will take place at IWEG on Thursday, November 19th from 6:30PM - 8:30PM followed by an in-person exam on Thursday, November 26. 

Sign up now!


WSET Level 2 Award in Wines

Explore the style and quality of wines from over 70 wine growing regions around the world

WSET Level 2 Award in Wines is a beginner to intermediate level qualification exploring wines for those working in the industry, looking to join the industry or for wine enthusiasts. The October blended learning course will be taught by Karen LaVigne DipWSET and Carrie Rau DipWSET.

You will:

  • Learn how wine is made
  • Explore the style and quality of wines made from over 22 regionally important grape varieties produced in over 70 wine growing regions around the world
  • Explore how environmental factors, grape growing, winemaking and maturation options influence the style and quality of wines made from eight principal grape varieties
  • Learn how classifications and other labelling terms indicate origin, style and quality
  • Develop assessment and description skills as you sample wines, sparkling wines and fortified wines
  • Learn how to understand and be able to apply basic principles of wine storage, service and food and wine pairing
  • Learn how to describe wine using the WSET Level 2 Systematic Approach to Tasting Wine® (SAT)

The course comprises of five remote (via Zoom) theory classes and three in-person tasting workshops. The final exam will offered remotely via WSET's Remote Invigilation Services.

Sign up now!


WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits 

Explore major spirits categories and styles, as well as liqueurs, vermouth and cocktails

WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits taught by WSET Certified Spirits Educator Christina Veira is back this fall in a blended learning format. 

In this course, you will:

  • Explore major spirits categories and styles, as well as liqueurs, vermouth and cocktails
  • Learn in detail about the 4 main steps in spirits production
  • Learn what labelling terms mean
  • Develop assessment and description skills as you sample a range of benchmark examples using the WSET Level 2 Systematic Approach to Tasting Spirits® (SAT)
  • Understand basic principles of spirits storage and service
  • Learn hands-on about cocktail equipment, ingredients, basic techniques and main cocktail families

Christina will be teaching our fall WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits in a blended learning format:

  • Five 2-hour synchronous online sessions (live and recorded) on the Zoom platform on Monday, October 19th - November 23rd @ 2:30PM - 4:30PM
  • In-class tasting and exam preparation workshops at IWEG on Monday, November 9th and 30th @ 6:30PM - 8:30PM
  • Remote invigilation exam in December

Sign up now!


WSET Level 3 Award in Sake

Deepen your understanding of the production methods that affect sake style, quality and price

Our WSET Level 3 Sake course taught by WSET Certified Sake Educator and Sake Samurai Michael Tremblay is back this November in a blended learning format:  

  • Four 3-hour synchronous online sessions (live and recorded) on the Zoom platform on Mondays, November 2nd - 23rd @ 10:30AM - 1:30PM
  • In-class tasting and exam preparation workshop at IWEG on Saturday, November 28th @ 11AM - 5PM
  • Exam at IWEG on Sunday, November 29th @ 11:30AM

WSET Level 3 Award in Sake provides in-depth understanding of the production methods that affect sake style, quality and price. It develops systematic tasting and description skills, as well as the ability to make recommendations. You will:

  • Explore in detail the techniques employed in sake production
  • Understand how these techniques affect sake style and quality
  • Experience a range of principal and specialty types of sake, evaluating quality, identity and price, using the WSET Level 3 Systematic Approach to Tasting Sake® (SAT) during the tasting and exam preparation workshop.
  • Appreciate the historic and current cultural and commercial significance of sake in Japan and in export markets
  • Assess and describe sake with confidence, and be able to make selection, storage and service suggestions

Sign up now!


5 Trending Italian Red Grape Varieties

Learn more about Italian wines this fall

Italy's wealth of grape varieties presents wine connoisseurs with many tantalizing prospects, particularly on the red wine spectrum. While Sangiovese and Nebbiolo still reign supreme, numerous grape varieties have re-emerged from hiding in recent years to spellbind wine lovers around the world. In Italy, the story of how some of these grapes transitioned from obscurity to fashionably cool can be just as compelling as the wines themselves. In many cases, the wines from these grapes are shining in a way they never have before, thanks to more informed decisions in the vineyard and winery.

Learn more about five up-and-coming Italian red grapes to pay attention to. 

Italian Wine Scholar
The Italian Wine Scholar program is an official 2-unit certification and course of study designed by the Wine Scholar Guild to provide current, accurate information on all of the wine regions of Northern, Central and Southern Italy, and to validate proficiency in the wines and wine regions of the country. Unit 1 covers Northern Italy, and Unit 2 covers Central and Southern Italy. The units of study can be taken in any order. 

Develop specialist knowledge of Toscana, Marche, Abruzzo, Umbria, Lazio, Molise, Campania, Basilicata, Puglia, Sardegna, Sicilia and Calabria.

The fall course will be offered in a blended learning format:

  • Five 1.5-hour synchronous online sessions (live and recorded) on the Zoom platform on Thursdays, November 5th - December 3rd @ 6:30PM -  8PM
  • In-class tasting workshop on Thursday, December 10th @ 6:30PM -  8:30PM
  • Exam  at IWEG on Thursday, December 17th @ 6:30PM - 8PM

Sign up now!


Wine Scholar Challenge

Tomorrow night!

Thursday, September 24th @ 7PM EST via Zoom

This competition is open to all IWEG students and alumni; you do not have to be a Wine Scholar Guild student to participate. IWEG instructors are not eligible to compete.

In celebration of its 15th anniversary, the Wine Scholar Guild and its network of program providers in over 30 countries will invite students of wine to compete in local "options game" competitions for fun, prizes and a chance to qualify for the global finale!

IWEG's three local winners will receive a one-year Wine Scholar Guild membership and move on to compete in the global options game finale on Thursday, October 29th @ 10AM EST. The final global winner will receive a 2021 wine study immersion trip of their choice to France, Italy or Spain (Airfare is not included. Trip value is approximately $4,000 USD depending on the destination).

Learn how to register and participate in this competition.


WSET Level 4 Diploma in Wines 

Last chance to join the online Diploma class!

This year due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the online WSET Diploma program will begin in October and a condensed in-class WSET Diploma program is planned for January. 

If you are interested in the WSET Diploma program and would like to learn more, we would be happy answer your questions. Please email Krystenne MacMullin at krystenne@iweg.org


Fall Courses

Mix of Remote and In-Person Delivery

WSET Level 2 Award in Wines


Date: Saturdays, October 17th - December 5th @ 9:30AM - 11:30AM
Register Now!

WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits

Date: Monday, October 19th - November 23rd @ 2:30PM - 4:30PM
Register Now!

WSET Level 3 Award in Sake

Date: Mondays, November 2nd - 23rd @ 10:30AM - 1:30PM
Register Now!

Spanish Wine Scholar 

Date: Thursdays, October 1st - November 19th @ 6:30PM to 8PM
Register Now!

Italian Wine Scholar: Unit 2

Date: Thursdays, November 5 - December 17th @ 6:30PM to 8PM
Register Now!

Online Learning

WSET Level 1 Award in Wines


Date: Monday, November 9th - Sunday, December 6th
Register Now!

WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits

Date: Monday, November 9th - Sunday, December 6th
Register Now!

WSET Level 1 Award in Sake

Date: Monday, November 9th - Sunday, December 6th
Register Now!

WSET Level 2 Award in Wines

Date: Monday, September 28th - Sunday, November 1st
Register Now!

Date: Monday, October 19th - Sunday, November 22nd
Register Now!

WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits

Date: Monday, September 28th - Sunday, November 1st
Register Now!

Date: Monday, November 16th - Sunday, December 20th
Register Now!

WSET Level 3 Award in Wines

Date: Monday, October 12th - Sunday, December 13th
Register Now!

Date: Monday, November 9th - Sunday, January 17th
Register Now!

All WSET textbooks and study guides will be in an eBook format during the 2020-21 academic year.