"Sommelier" is a job title - to get there, one needs detailed product knowledge and a credentialed resume.
SOMMELIER SCHOOL - THE CREDENTIAL PATHWAY
Collegial Instruction While Tasting
A great wine education is a strong foundation for any wine career or wine-savvy consumer. Each week we build a foundational bedrock of understanding and build towards world wine competency, achieved by passing this multi-week program and credential exam.
Students who have completed the structure outlined on the curriculum have achieved a better than 90% success rate and passed the challenging EXAM.
Over 1500 credentialed graduates are improving the wine world!
Enroll now to complete our program and join a growing population of wine savvy consumers and professional trade. Graduates will receive a Junior Wine Executive (J.W.E.) credential, wall certificate, and credentials that are helpful in the application process for future placement in the wine industry, or just to impress your family and friends around the dinner table. Perhaps best of all, you’ll be in the upper 10% in wine knowledge and be conversational in wine at all future work and social occasions
A FOUR WEEK COURSE
SEPT 13: Week One
SEPT 20: Week Two
SEPT 27: Week Three
OCT 04: Week Four
Hands-on tasting and instruction LIVE online via Zoom (instruction)
An introduction and exploration of tasting skills as we discuss 8-12 key wines per week and each student's purchasing project (tasting)
World wine competency (weekly quiz)
Varietal descriptions (flash cards) and homework projects
Wine laws and history (reading and comprehension)
Blind Wine Final - wines delivered with final Zoom kit for finalCredential Exam (The Beverage Aptitude Review) issuing J.W.E. Credential Certification awarded on successful completion.
Successful Certification includes: Wall Certificate, J.W.E. Credentials for your resume and lifelong satisfaction of elevating your wine ability
CULINARY INSTITUTE OF AMERICA'S EXPLORING WINE - 3rd Edition
No prior wine knowledge is required; if you have the materials and textbook with as much time for review as possible, you’ll have the advantage you need for success in each of the weekly sessions.
- Culinary Institute of America’s Exploring Wine textbook
(you may purchase this from us when you enroll, or you may source your own copy of the current edition)
- Week One Tasting Kit (8-10 wines; 1.5-2oz pours)
Week Two Tasting Kit (8-10 wines; 1.5-2oz pours)
Week Three Tasting Kit (8-10 wines; 1.5-2oz pours)
Which Experience Fits You Best?
Join class from anywhere! We deliver wine tasting kits to your home.
How It Works
Each of the four classes takes place online via Zoom. We deliver four individual wine tasting kits to your home! Tasting Kits are carefully handled, managed, and delivered within a certain timeframe to maintain their freshness by our friends at merchantofwine.com. If you are outside of our Los Angeles courier delivery zone, we will also email you your tracking information so that you are aware of the expected delivery time (signature is required!). The associated Zoom link will be emailed to you within 24 hours of the virtual tasting event. We encourage you to have proper glassware to maximize your tasting experience. Tastings typically run for approximately 120 minutes but may run longer if the conversation continues, as we ask fun questions and encourage you, the audience, to participate with us LIVE and in the chat box, too!
ABOUT IAN BLACKBURN, WINE ENTREPRENEUR
Being a wine anything wasn’t part of the original plan - and when you're raised in a military family, drinking wine may not be the first idea that comes to mind, either. Ian discovered the wine industry at the ripe age of 21 and didn't consider it a career option, but working for top chefs in the formidable dining rooms of early 1990s Los Angeles blew doors open - leading Ian to a career in wine education. In 1995, he started the internet’s first website dedicated to teaching the world about wine: LearnAboutWine.com. Hosting 100 classes a year for about 20 years – Ian is finally starting to get the hang of this.
In 2009, Ian and his best friend Clay Mauritson started making wine together: BeekeeperCellars.com; while this brand remains a small production, Ian hopes to grow Beekeeper Zinfandel into something special. Working with and around great wine brands for most of his adult-life, and leading wine tours and culinary adventures around the world - Ian loves to share his story and his passion.
When Covid shut down his wineLA.com event business, Ian pivoted full circle and restarted LearnAboutWine.com and launched ZoomIntoWine.com as a way to bring his version of wine education and entertainment to a limitless audience. With his family’s wine store Merchantofwine.com, virtual wine tastings with wine delivered "at home"; is the latest chapter in the evolution of Ian’s dedication to wine education and the wine lifestyle. This bio is a work in progress…let's see what the next vintage provides. In the meantime, Ian continues to study for his Masters of Wine and to write his next book about his journey.