After I did a couple of stints as a wine judge, and was further introduced to the amazing array of grape varietals coming from the U.S., I wanted to educate my palate further. I felt confident that I knew some of the wines from California, Washington state, Oregon…but nothing much beyond that. Selfishly I wanted to be added to the roster for more judging events, hence my decision to sign up for the American Wine Specialist ® certification course offered from NASA (North American Sommelier Association).
Then one other thing happened to make my decision final. I read an interesting article in Wine Spectator that discussed how we taste, say a Pinot Noir, from any other state other than California, and it doesn’t match up – if we live in California. Similar to how some Francophiles say a California Pinot Noir doesn’t come close to the terroir and complexity of a Burgundy. The author strived to make the point that someone from Burgundy may prefer their wine over a California Pinot as that is what their palate knows. He went on to say it is only fair to rate a Pinot against another Pinot from the same area, and to learn what makes a Pinot great – for the people of that area. So, you can see why studying wines from all over the U.S. would appeal.
Final note: if you decide to join me this February please let me know, I would love to form a study group. When I did the WSET (Wine and Spirits Educations Trust) course I also hosted a study group, and we all found it extremely helpful. Email me for that: Eve@EveWine101.com
NASA is proud to present the first globally-recognized certification on American Wine available – our American Wine Specialist ® certification.
America has some of the most unique and acclaimed wine regions on the planet. Our ideal climate and our geologic richness provide the potential for perfection, vintage after vintage. Americans have the luxury to grow virtually any grape variety in any style, giving us complete freedom to create a rich and diverse wine culture that began here in the 16th century and survived wars, drought, pestilence and Prohibition. It’s a blockbuster story that will change the way students – wine professionals and wine enthusiasts – think about American wine.
The AMERICAN WINE SPECIALIST® covers each of the 50 American states. Classic wine regions of Napa Valley and Sonoma will be covered, in addition to all other California American Viticultural Areas. Oregon’s Willamette Valley and Washington’s Columbia Valley – both home to significant investment by Old World wine families – will be explored at length. We will study the rapidly upcoming regions of New York’s Finger Lakes, Texas Hill Country, and Virginia’s Piedmont. We will also taste a number of native and hybrid varieties from all over the country…this will be an enlightening experience with depth of information and diversity of American wines.
The course consists of 24 hours (4 full days) of class time and tasting, with a final written exam (5th day) required to achieve the official AMERICAN WINE SPECIALIST® certification, issued by the North American Sommelier Association and recognized internationally by the Worldwide Sommelier Association (www.worldwidesommelier.com).
Designed around the concept of our widely acclaimed ‘Italian Wine Specialist‘ certification, this course focuses on the same holistic teaching methodology, looking at culture, history, terroir, climate, geology, geography, enography, legislation and tasting of 30+ high quality wines representative of wine regions around the USA. A short portion of the course will be dedicated to the exclusive and advanced WSA/NASA technical wine-tasting technique.
The American Wine Specialist ® Certification includes the following materials:
– “An Overview of American Wine” study guide coursebook (published by NASA, updated frequently)
– Promotional NASA membership for the current year
– Tasting of over 40 quality wines from around the country
– American Viticultural Area maps from many of America’s notable wine regions
This course requires no previous wine expertise, although a minimum basic wine knowledge is strongly recommended. Students should consider taking the Wine Primer course in addition to the AWS®.
“The American Wine Specialist® Course taught me more about American wines in two short weekends than 20 years of experience as a restaurant professional. The scope and breadth of the materials are matched only by the passion and expertise of the instructors. Great selection of wines to sample. Well worth every minute and every penny. NASA has another winner on its hands!” – John Tierney (Pizzeria il Fico, Los Angeles)
2016 FEBRUARY 20th, 21st, 27th & 28th – 9:30am to 4:00pm (with break) / exam TBA (1 hour)
The Wine House (Upstairs), 2311 Cotner Ave, Los Angeles, CA, 90064
Price / Details:
NASA (North American Sommelier Association) is a California founded non-profit networking and educational organization, key member of the WSA (Worldwide Sommelier Association – the biggest umbrella Sommelier organization in the world). NASA was born out of the ‘AIS California’, originally founded in Los Angeles by Professional Sommelier Alessandro Sbrendola (Valentino, L’Orangerie, Bartolotta). (read more)