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Displaying items by tag: french wine scholar

Monday, 03 May 2021 22:08

10 Essential French White Wines

The white wines of France offer unrivaled perfection. With few exceptions, every vineyard growing white grapes is so planted not because reds won’t grow well there, but because whites will flourish. France’s white wines are not an afterthought or a consolation prize. These are vinous treasures worth exploring.

Published in Blog
Monday, 25 January 2016 05:00

Matt Coleman, FWS

Congratulations Matt Coleman, FWS for passing the French Wine Scholar exam with honors! Matt Coleman is General Manager and Sommelier at Crossings Restaurant in South Pasadena, CA. Matt is pursuing his wine education with the Court of Master Sommeliers and reflects on how his French Wine Scholar studies has and will help him:

"I feel that the Court of Master Sommeliers and Wine Scholar Guild work hand in hand. I am confident that with the preparation on French theory with FWS it will prepare me for the Court of Masters level 3 and 4"

1)    Please let us know more about yourself and your passion for wine.

My interest with wine sparked while working at a local steakhouse in Pasadena that had a large wine program. At the time I was an Assistant Manager and from time to time I would sit in for wine tastings at the restaurant with the General Manager. I was able to get familiar with labels and varietals at a leisurely pace.  When I became the General Manager and wine buyer I quickly realized that I had to start learning more about wine.

2)    Please tell us more about your wine studies. What other wine certification programs have you followed and passed? If any, how do you think the FWS program complemented/added to your previous wine studies?

So, my good friend Manny and I decided to take Level 1 with the Court of Master Sommeliers and we passed. If you ask Manny, he’d tell you I was a wreck at the end. I found it all so over whelming. We started studying right away for Level 2 with the Court of Master that’s when our soon to be good friend Elliot, joined our group. Tasting and studying with them gave me a personal goal to try and catch up to them. They were amazing!

The big day came and we took Level 2 with Court of Masters. Once again nerves got a good hold on me. I was very lucky to have Manny and Elliot to keep me focused. We all passed and Elliot got top score of the class! I felt so privileged to have surrounded myself with two great gentlemen.

During the study period for Level 2, I had the opportunity to help my friend, Patrick, open his own restaurant, Crossings in South Pasadena. He gave me the opportunity to have a large influence on the opening bar and wine programs. We now do the list together as a team and have fun with wine maker dinners. As I explored my studies I am able to influence the wine list at the same rate.

Once Level 2 was complete, the wine bug had set in. There was nothing that could stop my studies. I learned about the Wine Scholar Guild from wine tasting classes at the Neptune School of Wine in Costa Mesa with Master Sommelier Peter Neptune. His class was brilliant and I was able to taste wines from many wine regions of France. Peter spoke so highly of the Wine Scholar Guild that the information couldn’t be rivaled. I completely agree! The format gives you an abundance of information without being over whelming while keeping my interest piqued the whole time!!! It was fun! I even canceled my cable TV so I could study more and not be distracted!

Please tell us how you think the FWS program will help you further your wine passion/carrier moving forward.

I recently passed the French Wine Scholar with honors! It took me a little longer but I am enthralled with the material. I quickly signed up for the Master-Level of Bourgogne right after. I feel that the Court of Master Sommeliers and French Wine Scholar work hand in hand. I am confident that with the preparation on French theory with FWS it will prepare me for the Court of Master Sommeliers level 3 and 4. The learning process has been so enjoyable that I don’t want it to ever stop.

I now see that the road to Master-Level will be a long journey that can’t be rushed. I look forward to taking advantage of everything the French Wine Society has to offer on my way to Level 3 (and 4) with Court of Masters!

Published in Top Exam Scorers


The French Wine Scholar™ program is the most advanced, comprehensive, and up-to-date French wine course available. The syllabus takes a regional approach and discusses all French wine appellations and the factors that shape their identities.

The program provides committed students of wine with an unparalleled set of study tools that are designed to maximize learning and boost knowledge retention.

Price: $750

Register now 


The French Wine Scholar™ Online | Independent Study Format Includes

  • A comprehensive 330-page study manual with illustrations, maps, and graphics, available in print + e-book formats
  • 1-year access to our interactive and user-friendly e-learning platform including online learning modulespronunciation exercisesquizzes and flashcards
  • The FWS Study Roadmap: A Checklist For Success, providing a suggested schedule of study
  • A list of recommended wines to sample on your own or in a tasting group 
  • An online exam sit (100 multiple choice questions).

Price: $750

Register now

The FWS program is also available in a Instructor-Led Online format with professional instructor support from with acclaimed wine educators Sharon McLean, DipWSET, FWS and WSG Education Director Lisa M. Airey. Many students find that this format gives the extra support and motivation to get to the finish line. 

Student Testimonials:

  • Faraz T Doan
    on Dec 21, 2022
    "Anyone who has the slightest curiosity about France and French wines will be amazed as how vast and different are French wines from other parts of the world and from each other. "
  • Clifford C Raisbeck III
    on Dec 21, 2022
    "Just a brief Shout Out that Tanya Morningstar and Regina D were Superb Instructors with High Energy and Depth of Knowledge."
  • Alex Hawes
    on Dec 17, 2022
    "The material is extremely detailed; if you want to dive deep on the wines of France, this is the program to challenge yourself with. "
  • Mario Salvato
    on Dec 9, 2022
    "The most useful tool for any sommelier wishing to elevate their French wine knowledge."
  • Javier Alberto ALVA ZAPATA
    on Dec 2, 2022
    "This program offers you a complete training and understanding on all the styles of wines that you could find in France. I have been studying wines for a few years and this course gave the chance to find a lot of rich and new information on the French wine industry."
  • Javier Alberto ALVA ZAPATA
    on Dec 2, 2022
    "This program offers you a complete training and understanding on all the styles of wines that you could find in France. I have been studying wines for a few years and this course gave the chance to find a lot of rich and new information on the French wine industry."
  • Laetitia Rey
    on Dec 2, 2022
    "The FWS program is by far the more in-depth course I had about French wines. As a tour guide myself, I very much appreciated the demonstration of how intertwined French history and wine culture are. "
  • Lucas Reynaud Paligot
    on Dec 1, 2022
    "Amazing program ! Waiting for my answer of my exam and already looking forward to start a new education "
  • Nicholas Poletto
    on Nov 20, 2022
    "The FWS study program is one of the most complete and coherent wine programs I have ever experienced. The additional learning tools (videos, maps, flashcards) were incredible. I have not seen an education platform with this many available resources. The teaching was easy to follow and I came away knowing so much more about French wine, history and geography. I really feel as though I am now an expert. Thank you!"
  • Nanako Yabe
    on Nov 17, 2022
    "The program is complete both in theory from the study materials and in practice with the wine tastings. All the maps are very helpful"
  • Cindy Gourlie
    on Nov 2, 2022
    "What a great program! Have taken WSET 1-3, CSW and CMS. This was by far my favorite. I really enjoyed the in depth look at history, local cuisine and deep insight into all things terroir. The course was very easy to maneuver independently . I will highly recommend this course as a supplement to other wine certifications especially with the in depth dive into regions that laid the foundation for all others. "
  • Luiz Gustavo Ams Prestes
    on Nov 1, 2022
    "I am very happy with everything that I got from a personal study from FWS course. Its a lot of new information acquired. Thank you !"
  • Serge Perrin Merinos
    on Sep 15, 2022
    "Deep dive in french wines. Very complementary to other reputed wines curriculums (e.g. WSET3). As a french citizen, I have learnt many things that the great majority of my compatriots (including wine lovers) have no clues about. "
  • Jocelyn NICOLAS
    on Aug 22, 2022
    "An exciting learning experience, with a global vision of french wines (geology, history, geography, regulations, wine industry, winemaking, wine characteristics etc...) ! Jocelyn NICOLAS, FWS"
  • Rosana Pasini
    on Aug 4, 2022
    "WSG has definetelly the best online materials for the student to study. It's clear, it's simple and shows the details of terroirs, history, wines in a very easy and lovey way. The classes are great and pleasant. I'll definetelly go on studying with WSG."


Study Materials

We offer all the necessary tools & support to master the wines of France!

FWS Study Manual in print + e-book formats

The 330-page, full-color study manual (NEW 7th Edition) provides all the information from which the test questions are derived. You do not need to research you own study materials; everything you need to know is in the manual.

Comprehensive coverage of France’s 14 distinct wine regions:

  • Viticultural history, wine culture and traditions
  • Location and climate and their effects on viticulture and wine style
  • Topography, geography and soils and their impact on the vine
  • Grape varieties and their organoleptic profiles
  • Viticulture and winemaking practices
  • Wine industry trends and economics
  • All AOCs with their regulations, wine styles and specificities
  • A Fundamentals Unit covering the history of France, its political geography, physical geography, climate, soils, grapes, training systems, and viticultural & vinicultural practices…plus an important piece on how AOCs are counted and why different sources quote different figures.
  • Special focus on current regional trends and challenges
  • Pie charts of pertinent AOC production numbers and area under vine by wine region
  • Learning objectives that provide detailed assessment criteria for mastery

Regions covered: Alsace, Champagne, Bourgogne, Beaujolais, Jura, Savoie, Loire, Bordeaux, South-West, Languedoc, Roussillon, Rhône, Provence, Corsica

FWS Online Study Modules

The FWS online study modules offer interactive presentations that are put into a measurable, meaningful format designed for maximum retention of content and ease of use. Each region of France is covered and dovetails nicely with the French Wine Scholar study manual. Study materials are available 24/7. If you’ve got a laptop and an internet connection, you’ve got a classroom!

French Wine Scholar™ online study modules features:

  • Quizzes and learning games for self-evaluation
  • Educational graphics, videos and pronunciation exercises to offer new insight and keep you engaged
  • Your place is automatically bookmarked/saved to resume where you left off 
  • A progress bar tracks your accomplishments

Professional Instructor Support

  • Online Independent Study: via the Q&A forum answered by French Programs Director
  • Online On-Demand Instructor-Led Format: via the Q&A forum in your online classroom, directly via email, and during live online Monthly Meet-Ups with your instructors
  • In Classroom: via a local, certified instructor

Price: $750

Register now 

About the French Wine Scholar:

The French Wine Scholar study and certification program confers a post-nominal to wine professionals and enthusiasts who successfully pass the certification exam (Ex: John Smith, FWS). With a school network encompassing 30 countries on 5 continents, the FWS credential has true international recognition.

It was created by WSG Education Director, Lisa M. Airey CWE, with the support of the French Ministry of Agriculture which knighted her in recognition of the program's exceptional level of depth, accuracy, detail, and academic rigor as well as its impact on the global wine industry.

Industry Testimonials

  • "Indispensable for any wine trade professional who works with French wine.  Bravo!”    
    Martin Sinkoff
  • "My most sincere appreciation goes to the WSG team for their great work to make French wines so much fun
    Xavier Barlier
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Published in French Wine Scholar
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