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5 Sake Facts Every Drinks Professional Needs to Know

A person in a pink shirt holding up a tasting glass to which sake is being poured into.

Not a wine, a beer or a spirit, sake is a beverage category unto itself. A cherished pour in Japan for over 2500 years, sake is increasingly making its mark across the world, appearing on wine lists, bottle shelves, and in the cocktails of drinks professionals in-the-know.

And the figures back it up; according to a 2021 survey conducted in Japan, the majority of respondents drank sake on several days per week.

If you’re a sake starter, here are 5 key sake facts you need to know now.

The new WSET Level 2 Award in Sake

Man smiling while holding an enormous bottle of sake

This new intermediate-level course is for those entering a profession in the industry as well as for enthusiasts who wish to broaden their knowledge in a structured way. You will learn how to confidently describe, as accurately as possible, what the named products you have studied taste like. You will also become a competent and confident sake taster and start the journey of learning the links between aroma, taste and touch to the theory of production.

The course will be delivered by IWEG’s Certified WSET Sake Lead Educator and Sake Samurai, Michael Tremblay.

The in-class WSET Level 2 Award in Sake will take place Saturdays and Sundays, April 6th and April 7th at 9:30am – 4:30pm, and Sunday, April 14th at 9:30am – 12:30pm. Learn more.

What You Need to Know About WSET Level 3 Award in Wines

So, you’ve successfully passed the WSET Level 2 Award in Wines, and now you’re wondering what to do next.  

Yes, during the course you get to taste amazing wines from all over the world – Burgundy, Champagne. Margaret River, Mendoza – and you meet some great people along the way. But taking on Level 3 is a big commitment, and although it is completely possible to pass and to do well, it should not be underestimated. 

The course is suitable for professionals in the drinks industry as well as advanced enthusiasts. If you’re ready to learn the difference between spur and replacement cane pruning or between the Ancestral and Asti methods, this is the course for you. Read on.

WSET Level 3 Award in Wines

A man in all-black with his hands in his pockets smiling while standing in a vineyard.

This advanced-level course is for industry professionals as well as dedicated enthusiasts who want to develop a broader and deeper understanding of wine. You’ll have a thorough understanding of grape growing and wine making and the factors that account for the style, quality and price of the principal still, sparkling and fortified wines of the world. You’ll learn how to use your tasting notes to make objective conclusions on a wine’s style, quality and readiness for drinking.

The online WSET Level 3 Award in Wines will take place Monday, April 1st – Sunday, June 2nd. Exam on Saturday, June 29th at 2:30pm. Learn more.

The in-class WSET Level 3 Award in Wines will take place Saturdays, April 13th – June 1st at 10:30am – 4pm. Exam on Saturday, June 15th at 10:30am. Learn more.

Starting Soon at IWEG

WSET Level 1 Award in Beer

Four glasses of beer with different hues. The text says WSET Level 1 Award in Beer, in-person.

WSET Level 1 Award in Beer provides a great introduction to the world of beer. Learning through sight, smell and taste, you’ll become familiar with a range of beer styles and how they are made.

If you work with beer, you’ll be able to answer customer queries with confidence and provide helpful recommendations. If you’re learning for fun, you’ll feel inspired to explore new styles and know how to get the most out of every glass.

The next in-class WSET Level 1 Award in Beer will take place Mondays, March 18th and March 25th at 5:30 pm – 8:30pm. Learn more.

The next online WSET Level 1 Award in Beer will take place Monday, March 25th – Sunday, April 21st. Learn more

The French Wine Scholar

Image of logo with the words French Wine Scholar (FWS). In the background in a laptop with the image single and double guyot pruning system, the French Wine Scholar manual and a smartphone with Champagne flashcards.

The French Wine Scholar is an in-depth specialist certification focused on the diverse wines and wine regions of France. It is designed by the Wine Scholar Guild to provide current, accurate information on all of the wine regions of France and validate proficiency in the wines and wine regions of France.

This 20-hour course provides detailed coverage of French AOC wines, as well as an introduction to French history, geography, viticulture and winemaking.

The next French Wine Scholar will run Thursdays, March 28th – May 30th at 6pm – 8pm. Learn more.

WSET Level 2 Award in Wines

WSET Level 2 Award in Wines is the perfect wine course for anyone wishing to learn about a wide range of grapes and styles, as well as those seeking to build on the introductory knowledge gained with the WSET Level 1 Award in Wines. You’ll gain knowledge of the principal and regionally important grape varieties of the world, the regions in which they are grown and the styles of wine they produce.

The next online WSET Level 2 Award in Wines will run Monday, March 18th – Sunday, April 21st. Learn more.

The next in-class WSET Level 2 Award in Wines will run Tuesdays, April 2nd – May 21st at 6pm – 8pm. Learn more.