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Detailed Curriculum

Detailed Curriculum

Webinar Abstracts:

  • 01: The Viticultural History of the Rhône Valley: Veni, Vidi, Vino with Louis Barruol 

    The Rhône Valley’s viticultural landscape was sculpted by the Romans and its wines were highly prized throughout that ancient Empire. After the fall of Rome, it was this region that became the center of power for all of Europe when the Catholic Church moved its Holy See to Avignon. It was here where vignerons drafted and codified the first wine legislation defining appellation and production standards in a precedent that was emulated the world over. Throughout history, the Rhône has been at the forefront of power and its wines are just as gutsy. In this webinar, we will explore the timeline that made the Rhône and its wines what they are today!

  • 02: The Natural Setting: Geology, Topography, Soils and Macroclimate with Olivier Hickman

    Rhône rocks! This webinar will delve into the underlying geology and resulting topography of the Northern and Southern Rhône and how this manifests itself with regard to the flavors in the glass! Are you a terroir-ist? If so, you’ll agree...there’s no place like Rhône! 

    Explore the Rhône Valley through the seasons. Discover the impact of its powerful winds, diurnal temperature swings, ample sunlight hours and the river itself. Mountains and peaks play a huge role in a wine’s inherent structure and flavor profile due to the mesoclimates they engender. Warm soils create microclimates that further the ripening process. In this webinar, geology, topography and climate come together to paint a more complete picture of this special place. Get all the dirt!

  • 03: Grapes & Winemaking: Nature and Nurture with Lisa Granik Master of Wine


The vine doesn’t just “survive” in the Rhône...it thrives, a fact made manifest by the plethora of grape varieties found here! This webinar will explore them all (and their training methods) and speak to the typical red, white and rosé blends and the philosophies behind the assemblages.

  • 04: Terroirs of the Northern Rhône I: Saint-Joseph, Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas and Saint-Péray with Barbara Philip Master of Wine

    This webinar will provide a detailed examination of Saint-Joseph, Hermitage, Crozes-Hermitage, Cornas and Saint-Péray and the climatic and topographical factors specific to these AOCs. What factors make Cornas red-only and Saint-Peray white-only ? What are the differences between Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitage ? Why is Cornas built on Syrah whereas Saint-Joseph, Hermitage and Crozes-Hermitages blend Marsanne and Roussanne into their reds ? The answers are not blowing in the wind.
  • 05: Terroirs of the Northern Rhône II: Côte-Rôtie, Condrieu, Château Grillet and the Vins de Vienne with Paul Amsellem

    Digging deeper...this webinar will provide a detailed examination of the Côte-Rôtie, Condrieu and Château Grillet, and the climatic and topographical factors specific to each AOC. What did the Romans see when they built terraces for the vine in Vienne ? What are the differences, in legend and in reality, between the Côtes Brun and Blond ? Why are Condrieu and Château Grillet two separate appellations ? Only some of the answers are written in stone.
  • 06: Rock Stars of the Southern Rhône: The Crus with Victor Coulon

    Explore the 9 Crus (Vinsobres, Vacqueyras, Gigondas, Rasteau, Beaumes-de Venise, Lirac, Tavel, Cairanne and Châteauneuf- du-Pape) together with the climatic and topographical factors of these rich and varied AOCs. It’s a heady melange of red, white and pink from appellations that boast a rich legacy of drink.

  • 07: Non-Crus AOCs of the Southern Rhône: The Fascinating Appellations on the Fringe with Elizabeth Gabay Master of Wine

    The small appellations found in the Southern Rhône are often overlooked when juxtaposed next to their more well-known neighbours. This webinar will explore how and why these appellations were individually created, the differences between them, and the value they represent in the red, white, rosé, sweet and sparkling arenas.

  • 08: Rhône vs. Rhône Rangers: An Old World/New World Comparison with Elizabeth Gabay, Master of Wine & Special Guest Randall Grahm

    The Rhône’s hot, dry climate lends itself to comparison with many new world regions. This was recognised by the renowned winemaker, Randall Grahm, of Bonny Doon in California when he headed up the movement known as the Rhône Rangers in the 1980s. The grape varieties found in the southern Rhône are those used by American winemakers who are members of this association. We will be talking with Randall Grahm to discuss the benefits of these varieties and the different wine styles they produce in France and in the USA.

  • 09: Le Rhône à Table: The Food Culture of the Rhône Valley with sommelier, Christophe Tassan

    The Rhône boasts an unparalled richness of food cultures. Here, the cuisine au beurre (buter-based) mixes with the cuisine à l’huile (olive oil-based). Dishes incorporate such fabulous local products such as charcuterie Lyonnaise, Caillettes and Chestnuts from the Ardeche, Truffles, Lamb and Asparagus from Luberon, Melon de Cavaillon, Nougat de Montelimar, Black Olives from Nyons, Picodon de la Drôme, La Rigotte de Condrieu, Faisselle du Ventoux, Walnuts from Dauphine and Apricots and Candied Fruit from Apt. Join us for a culinary tour de force !
  • 10: Rhône Collectables: icon wines and cuvees, investing & cellaring… with Charles Curtis Master of Wine

    Looking for the “next big thing” in the auction market ? Think Rhône. Journalist, consultant and former head of Christie’s wine auctions in Asia and North America will walk you through everything you need to know to find the hottest wines of the Rhône Valley, both north and south. Learn to look beyond the scores to truly understand what makes these collectible wines great – and how to spot a bargain before price goes through the ceiling!

  • 11: Tradition & Transition: Rhône Practices, Economics, Wine Styles, and Biodynamics with Lisa Granik Master of Wine

    Put your finger on the pulse! Lisa will discusse how and why the styles and taste profiles of the principal AOCs have evolved over the years and what are the present trends and current transitions taking place within them. This is a look at the Rhône from a past, present and future perspective. 



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