You may have noticed an absence of wine classes on our calendars lately, but all that changes next month. The Chopping Block is partnering with Fine Vintage to offer the prestigious Wine & Spirit Education (WSET) to wine enthusiasts in Chicago.
What is WSET?
The Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) is the "gold standard" in wine education, offering certification courses that are recognized around the world as formal qualifications in wine. The UK-based WSET runs courses in 55 countries and has appointed Fine Vintage to provide the courses in several cities, including Chicago. At the end of each course, there is an exam which gives formal certification in wine.
Who Should Take These Classes?
The courses are open to any wine lover, but those working in the service industry may find the classes especially helpful to expand their wine knowledge and gain the ability to converse, serve and shop for wine with confidence.
James Cluer, Master of Wine
James Cluer, one of only 312 Masters of Wine in the world and only 38 in North America, is the founder of Fine Vintage and has put together a team of the most knowledgeable wine experts in the United States and Canada. He will teach the first courses at The Chopping Block in May himself.
In addition to the expert instruction, Fine Vintage prides itself on offering an array of exceptional wines at all courses, to show students benchmark examples, a major point of differentiation between them and other schools.
When we were first approached by Fine Vintage, Owner/Chef Shelley Young knew it was a natural fit for The Chopping Block. "Our mission is to get the country to cook, and wine education is a part of that. We are pleased to be able to offer this first class experience where students will receive expert instruction as well as taste an array of exceptional wines. We know this type of education appeals to our students, so we are looking forward to welcoming wine lovers and the wine trade to our kitchens," said Shelley.
Bookings are now being accepted on Fine Vintage's website for the first classes in May:
Level 1: Foundation - A 1-day course that covers basic wine knowledge and the fundamentals of wine and food pairing.
This course is sold out, but there's still space available in Level 2.
Level 2: Intermediate - A 3-day course that provides instruction on professional wine tasting and extensive coverage of the main grape varieties and the regions they come from.
Date: Sunday, May 25th, Saturday, May 31st & Sunday, June 1st 9:00am-5:00pm
Location: The Chopping Block at the Mart
Both qualifications include all textbooks, wine tasting glasses, course materials, wine samples throughout the course and the WSET exam.
Crain's Chicago recently featured the WSET classes, so check out the article here.
If you can't join us in May, stay tuned for the next round of WSET classes coming up in July.