Carmen knew there was more to learn about wine. Here’s her experience:
Recently I have been exploring the wine areas here in Canada, specifically the Okanagan Valley, and the Niagara and Bench wine regions. It is intriguing to consider all the components that go into wine making, from the passionate owners and knowledgeable employees of wine estates to how aspects such as climate, yearly weather patterns and soil affect the vines and their grapes.
I realized there was more that I needed to learn about this craft – and my curiosity about the industry has been growing. The more I learned, the more I wanted to learn. It was time to act.
After researching wine courses online and narrowing down to various WSET providers I chose IWEG because of the sound reputation, the many years involved in training, and the professional content on the website.
The course did not disappoint. I now have a foundation with which to move forward, a rudimentary understanding of grapes, what influences their growth, and what goes into winemaking. The SAT provides structure to guide and access.
And I was able to balance the demands of the Level 1 course with my day job responsibilities with relative ease; the only thing needed is time management and enthusiasm – no problem.
Where will this learning take me? I do not know – but I do know that my passion for writing and literature took me into a career as an English teacher, and perhaps my passion and curiosity for wine will support me in a career change. This year will tell all as I continue to embark on this fascinating journey!
Yachi Hsieh Selected as Les Dames d’Escoffier Bursary Recipient
IWEG sponsor Les Dames d’Escoffier Ontario Chapter has award Yachi Hsieh a bursary for WSET Level 4 Diploma in Wines.
Les Dames d’Escoffier Ontario Chapter is dedicated to helping students succeed both personally and professionally in the world of wine and will continue to support these vital education and scholarship and bursary programs.
We invited Yachi to tell us why she is pursuing a WSET wine education:
I was born in Taiwan and moved to Vancouver when I was thirteen, to Toronto for university and have been here since. My parents weren’t able to move here with me, and I often felt homesick. My mom would give me her recipes, and making the food really brings me back home. I believe this is when I developed my passion for the food and beverage industry. Food and beverage is not just a necessity for us, but can also transport you to a memorable time of your life, can make you feel better about your day, can help you connect with others, and most importantly build beautiful memories. My ultimate goal is to open restaurants, that bring happiness to people by providing great service, amazing food and beverages. A place where people can feel blessed and content with life.
When I first moved to Canada, the high school chose my elective course for me and it was a food class. The grade 9 food class was definitely a class that set me up for success till this day, the teacher taught us all the details about how to clean a kitchen properly, how to use each of the kitchen tool supplies, cook, and baking basics. Since then, I really fell in love with baking, on the weekends I would either be baking cookies and cakes, or cooking food with my mom’s recipes. I was known among my friends as a good cook since I was in grade 9.
After I moved to Toronto, due to the harsh weather it was more difficult for me to access gourmet Asian restaurants, so I started making gourmet Asian food at home and definitely tried more food from different cultures, which greatly widen my food and beverage knowledge. This brings me to my first restaurant job as a hostess at Auberge du Pommier, a classic French restaurant sitting at York Mills. As a hostess, I was amazed by all the little details there are to running a restaurant and providing the absolute best experience to the guests. I quickly became a server assistant, where I learnt every single detail of the food on a plate and worked with the chefs/ kitchen closely. When the company offered WSET Level 1 Award in Wines, I didn’t know much about wine and want learn more about it. After the one-day class, I learnt about all the science and worked that went into a bottle of wine which really ignited my passion for wine. I immediately signed up for Level 2, then Level 3 and now I am starting my WSET Level 4 Diploma in Wines.
Special Offer: WSET Level 3 Award in Sake
Sign up by November 18th with the coupon code l3sakenov22 to save $95 at checkout. Limited quantities available.
WSET Level 3 Award in Sake provides in-depth and detailed 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. Expect to spend 25 hours of preparation and review outside of the classroom.
- The main techniques that are used in the production of sake and how they influence style and quality
- The principal and specialty categories of sake
- The sake industry and the commercial importance of sake in the Japanese and export markets
- The principles behind the storage, selection and service of sake
- How to appreciate the historic and current cultural and commercial significance of sake in Japan and in export markets
- How to assess and describe sake with confidence, and be able to make selection, storage and service suggestions
- How to taste sake, describe their characteristics and evaluate their quality, using the WSET Level 3 Systematic Approach to Tasting Sake® (SAT)
The course will be taught by Michael Tremblay. Michael’s foray into wine and sake has been 25 years in the making, traveling around the world and using wine and sake as a lens for learning about the history and culture of different regions. Michael is one of 70 Sake Samurai in the world, a title bestowed by the Japan Sake and Shochu Maker’s Association at Kyoto’s 1300 year old shrine to sake, the Matsunoo Taisha. He is the co-author of the book on sake “Exploring the World of Japanese Craft Sake: Rice, Water, Earth” released on March 8, 2022 and published by Tuttle.
Special Offer: WSET Level 2 Award in Wines Condensed
Sign up by November 18th with the coupon code nov22l2 to save $100 at checkout. Limited quantities available.
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.
- How to taste and describe wine using the WSET Level 2 Systematic Approach to Tasting Wine®(SAT)
- How environmental factors, grape-growing, winemaking and maturation options influence the style and quality of wines made from eight principal grape varieties:
- Pinot Grigio/Gris
- Sauvignon Blanc
- Cabernet Sauvignon
- Pinot Noir
- The style and quality of wines:
- Made from 22 regionally important grape varieties
- Produced in over 70 geographical indications (GIs) around the world
- How grape varieties and winemaking processes influence key styles of:
- Sparkling wines
- Fortified wines
- Key labelling terms used to indicate origin, style and quality
- Principles and processes involved in the storage and service of wine
- Principles of food and wine pairing
Upon successful completion of a 50-question multiple-choice exam, you will receive a WSET certificate and lapel pin and will be able to use the associated WSET certified logo.
WSET Level 2 Award in Wines
Date: Saturdays, November 19th – December 3rd at 9:30am – 4:30pm
Explore New Zealand Chardonnay and Pinot Noir with John Szabo
Join Master Sommelier and IWEG visiting instructor John Szabo for an evening of tasting and exploration of New Zealand Chardonnay and Pinot Noir.
The masterclass will take place on Thursday, February 2nd, 2023 at 6:30pm – 8:30pm. The cost is $95. Register now!
Master Sommelier John Szabo was the first Canadian to add the “MS” after his name in 2004, and he holds the WSET Diploma with honours. He’s seen the hospitality business from all sides including cooking and washing dishes, serving and sommellerie, importing, teaching, writing, photographing, speaking, emceeing, consulting and judging wine internationally. He was listed as “Canada’s best-known sommelier” in Meininger’s Wine Business International.
‘Oh, stunning’: A Negroni Sbagliato with Prosecco
How could the Negroni become more popular? When it’s made “with prosecco in it.” IWEG Education Director and Wine Writer for The Globe and Mail, Christopher Waters DipWSET shares how the Negroni sbagliato became an overnight sensation. Learn more.
Career Opportunity: Cellar Master at IWEG
Importing Wine, Beer, Spirits For Pleasure & Profit
Join Charles Steven Trenholme for the day-long seminar Importing for Wine, Beer & Spirits For Pleasure & Profit, which provides insights into the dynamics of importing wine, craft beers & spirits into Canada. Charles Steven brings to the seminar 35+ years of experience working in various capacities including managing national sales agency, brand management, sommelier and as educators.
Charles Steven knows first-hand that there are still hundreds of suppliers around the world actively looking for importers to represent them in Canada, providing the opportunity to develop a full or part-time career in this dynamic industry. There are also sales and brand ambassador positions available for those with certified sommelier training.
Many of Ontario’s top importers & agents started their careers after attending Charles Steven’s seminar. They readily agreed that they gained valuable insight to the ins & outs of importing beverage alcohol, as well as the operations of the LCBO.
There are also good career opportunities for those with WSET or Sommelier training.
Charles Steven has offered this seminar since 1993 receiving rave reviews from The Globe & Mail, Wine Tidings, Toronto Life, Toronto Sun, The Hamilton Spectator, Wine Access, Vines Magazine as well as CBC Radio.
The seminar will take place on Saturday, November 5th at 9:30am – 4:30pm.
IWEG students and faculty can use the promo code IWEG to receive a 10 per cent discount.
Sommeliers Needed: Brunello Wine Tasting
Predhomme Marketing Insights is seeking Smart Service certified sommeliers to take orders and pour wine for a Brunello wine tasting on November 17, 2022. Sommeliers will be paid $25 per hour to pour these outstanding wines. Sign up here. Contact firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com for more information.
Volunteers Needed: Noble Estates 30th Anniversary Party
Noble Estates is hosting a 30th Anniversary party (two years late) on November 17th in Toronto. Their restaurant partners, LCBO staff, producers and customers will be attending the event to help celebrate. There will be a tasting component in the afternoon.
Noble is looking for volunteers to help with the pouring in the afternoon. If you are interested in volunteering while also networking with industry professionals, contact Victoria at VictoriaP@nobleestates.com.
Wine from the Edge
The Oregon Wine Board & New Zealand Winegrowers present a deep dive into classic and unexpected wines from Oregon and New Zealand.
On Thursday, November 10, 2022, join Master of Wine Bree Stock and Master Sommelier Cameron Douglas as they take you on a tour through wines from both regions.
Masterclass: 10am -1pm
Lunch at Ricarda’s: 12pm – 1pm
- Compare 8 New Zealand Wines with 8 Oregon state wines
- In-depth look at growing and soil conditions in both regions
- Variety of red, white and sparkling wines
- 6 blind wines to test your tasting skills
Limited number of seats.
Trade walk around tasting: 1pm – 4pm
- A self-pour progressive tasting event at 3 Toronto restaurants: Aloette, Peter Pan Bistro and Sommelier Factory.
- This interactive experience will allow you to visit each location to discover three themed tasting comparisons from each region.
Register soon because space is limited.