Hidden Menu

  • Tuscany Wine Tour (May 2019)
  • Burgundy Wine Tour (June 2019 - FULL)
  • Champagne Wine Tour (June 2019 - FULL)
  • Southwest France Wine Tour (Oct 2016)
  • Rioja Wine Tour (tba)
  • Jura Wine Tour (Oct. 2017)
  • Home
  • French Wine Scholar Guild
  • Italian Wine Scholar Guild
  • Spanish Wine Scholar Guild
  • Trip Evaluation
  • Reservation Form
  • Reservation Form Special
  • My Membership
  • Webinar-Evaluation
  • Private Trips Reservation Form
  • Notify me when Flash Player bug is fixed
  • Our Recent Top Exam Scorers
  • Guest membership
  • Top Exam Scorer
  • 3-Month Guest Membership
  • Latest newsletter
  • Latest News Archive
  • Newsletter Signup
  • Program Providers
  • Application Submission Form
  • Free 6 Month Membership
  • Thank you for your submission
  • Acymailing Modify Subscription
  • Update Newsletter Profile
  • Preferences saved
  • Italian Wine Scholar - Unit 1 - Study Manual
  • IWS test page
  • Study Trips for Sommeliers
  • Master-Level Online Programs for Wine Educators
  • Membership for Wine Educators
  • Master-Level Programs for Wine Enthusiasts
  • Membership for Wine Enthusiasts
  • Loire Valley Pronuncitation Module
  • WSG Membership for Sommeliers
  • Master-Level Online Programs for Sommeliers
  • Wine Study Trips for Sommeliers
  • Wine Study Tours for Wine Educators
  • Self-Enrollment in FWS v5.2
  • Study Tours for Wine Enthusiasts
  • FWS V6 Upgrade
  • chronoform users-edit
  • Private trips
  • Cru Artisan College 2017
  • French Wine Scholar™ online | Independent Study Format
  • French Wine Scholar™ online | 14-week Instructor-Led Format
  • Membership for wine professionals and enthusiasts
  • Private trips
  • French Wine Scholar™ online | 14-week Instructor-Led Format UPGRADE
  • French Wine Scholar™ online | 14-week Instructor-Led Format UPGRADE (from previous versions)
  • Community Dashboard
  • wine study and tasting groups faq
  • LOCAL STUDY AND TASTING GROUPS USER AGREEMENT
  • Italian Wine Scholar™ Unit 1 online | 14-week Instructor-Led Format
  • Italian Wine Scholar™
  • Italian Wine Scholar™ Unit 2 online | 15-week Instructor-Led Format
  • Rhône Wine Tour (June 2018)
  • Champagne Master-Level - Excerpt 1
  • Champagne Master-Level - Excerpts 2
  • Louis Roederer Scholarship for the Champagne Master-Level Program
  • Laurent Perrier Scholarship for Guild of Sommeliers Members
  • Champagne ML Preview
  • Reservation form for Bourgogne intensive
  • Tuscany (May 2019)
  • Thanks for your submission
  • Register Menu

    Our Recent Top Exam Scorers

    Lisa Esteban, SWS

    Congratulations to Lisa Esteban, SWS, for passing the Spanish Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Lisa:

    I have been working in the Spanish wine industry for six years now. My father is from Spain and I grew up very connected to these roots, so much so that after college I moved to Spain to study translation, and it was at the beginning of this time that I developed a curiosity about Spanish wine. The more I learned, the more I realized I wanted to dedicate my energy to sharing my love for Spain and its culture, cuisine and, of course, wine with the rest of the world. I was accepted into the Spanish Institute for Exterior Commerce (ICEX) Master’s program in International Business and Trade in Madrid where I focused my energy on preparing myself for a career in promoting Spanish wine abroad. I began my career working for Bodegas Chivite in the Export department, managing North and South America and moved back to my home-town of Los Angeles. In 2017, I joined the Gil Family Estates as Brand Ambassador for California where I work closely with our distributor partner to educate customers and consumers about our wines. I truly enjoy the opportunity to educate others about the historical and cultural significance of wine – its inextricably tied to the land, the heritage, and the people of the country and I think that’s beautiful.

    I have also completed the WSET II & III programs (Pass with Distinction) in 2016 and 2019. I think the WSET program is crucial for anyone who wants to gain an understanding of the nuances of wine and winemaking. However, I felt I wanted to gain a deeper understanding of how history, culture, climate, terrain, etc. have uniquely impacted the Spanish wine style and industry as we know it today – this led me to the SWS program. I think this program has given me not only a broader understanding of Spain’s role in the global wine industry, but also allowed me to delve into regions that are just on the cusp of reaching their full potentials. It’s given me knowledge that I take into my work every day, but it’s also re-ignited the curiosity that started it all.

    The SWS program has helped me expand my knowledge about Spanish wine and wine regions. My career has allowed me to delve very deeply into certain regions, but there’s so much more to know and explore! This program has given me a foundation on which to build through continuing to taste wines, reading, and travelling. I hope to keep sharing my passion and culture in an increasingly informed way with others.

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial It’s given me knowledge that I take into my work every day, but it’s also re-ignited the curiosity that started it all.
    • Position Brand Ambassador, Gil Family Estates
    • Certifications WSET Levels 2 & 3
    Read more...

    Massimiliano Guerra, SWS

    Congratulations to Massimiliano Guerra, SWS, for passing the Spanish Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Massimiliano:


    I’m a wine lover that loves travelling and exploring wine regions of the world.  I love Italy, France and Spain so it was a great pleasure to complete the SWS program and get a deep understanding of Spain, its culture and wine regions.

    I’m not a wine professional but I would love to get into the wine world at some point in my life.

    With SWS, I have completed the 3 main study programs available at Wine Scholar Guild. I would now like to take a master in some areas like Champagne or Bourgogne. I have also completed WSET 1, 2 and 3 so I’m now ready for the WSET 4 (DipWSET) program.

    I believe SWS will be very helpful (together with IWS and FWS) for the WSET L4 study program I intend to start soon. I believe the level of details of these courses (SWS, IWS and FWS) is unique and provides a massive foundation for the WSET Level 4 course.

    If I compare the SWS program to other courses where I studied Spanish wine, I cannot find anything as detailed and as precise.

    No doubt the SWS is the best existing course on Spanish Wine that wine lovers can find. For those like me interested in knowing more about Spain, its culture and its wines, this course is definitely the pinnacle of all of this. Definitely recommended!

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial No doubt the SWS is the best existing course on Spanish Wine that wine lovers can find... Definitely recommended!
    • Position Wine Enthusiast
    • Certifications WSET Levels 1, 2 & 3, Italian Wine Scholar, French Wine Scholar
    Read more...

    Mario Cagnetta, SWS

    Congratulations to Mario Cagnetta, SWS, for passing the Spanish Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Mario:

    I am the Head Sommelier Manager at Buca Cucina. Our focus is on Italian wines but I always have an interest in International wines. Lately I have been exploring Spanish wines producers and their style. Taking the SWS enhanced my knowledge in Spanish wines.

    I am a candidate for Advanced Sommelier 2020, but due to Covid 19 the exam is delayed until 2021. I am also studying to become a Certified Wine Educator. In the last months I focused on Wine Scholar Guild Master Level Programs achieving Bordeaux, Champagne, Provence and Burgundy Master level Certifications. The Spanish Wine Scholar gives a strong foundation about Spanish wines and culture. For sure this is a key component in my studies and for my career path.

    Having a better knowledge of Spanish Wine it is very important if you work in the competitive Wine industry. It allows you to speak confidently to your customers and it is also an important tool when training your staff.

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial The Spanish Wine Scholar gives a strong foundation about Spanish wines and culture.
    • Position Sommelier / Manager, King Street Food
    • Certifications Wine Scholar programs: Italian & Spanish. Master Level programs: Bourgogne, Champagne, Provence, Bordeaux
    Read more...

    Rafael Delgado, SWS

    Congratulations to Rafael Delgado, SWS, for passing the Spanish Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Rafael:

    I have been a food  and beverage professional, sommelier,  and wine educator working for hotels and independent restaurants for over 10 years, most recently Sommelier for Jaleo by José Andrés in Disney Springs (currently closed due to COVID-19 closures). Additionally, I teach private wine classes to hospitality professionals interested in improve their sales and knowledge of wine in a restaurant setting.

    I have a Sommelier certificate from the United States Sommelier Association, Certified Specialist of Wine, and now I’m proud to have achieved the Spanish Wine Scholar Certification.  I was inspired by Chef José Andrés’ endorsement of the certification, as I am inspired by his mission of changing the way America sees food at our home and at restaurants.  

    As a child I spent a lot of time in Spain, and wine has always been part of daily meals in my family.  The wine at that time was mostly table wine, but, even as a child, I was always fascinated by Sherry, Rioja and wine from the Canary Islands.  My favorite wines to serve are Txacoli, served as they do in the Basque Region, from a distance, aerating the wine on its way to the glass; Sherry, with a venencia; and Cava ( or any of the Quality Sparkling Wine from Spain), because high quality bubbles from Spain are delicious, make everything better.

    Working in restaurants, schedules are always changing, for that reason, I chose the online program led by Rick Fisher, because it provided the unique opportunity for class time by the creator of the course, with the flexibility of being able to study at my own time and pace.  

    My favorite saying: Wine is the best sauce on the side. It always makes the food taste better and conversations more alive.  

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial I chose the online program led by Rick Fisher, because it provided the unique opportunity for class time by the creator of the course.
    • Position Sommelier, Jaleo by José Andrés, Disney Springs
    • Certifications Certified Sommelier, CSW
    Read more...

    Woodie Stephenson, FWS

    Congratulations to Woodie Stephenson, FWS, for passing the French Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Woodie:

    I am a wine professional working in the South Central area of the United States. I live and work in Texas, but I visit several states a year to work with our distributor partners and accounts: Louisiana, Colorado, Oklahoma, Missouri and Kansas. I studied technical writing and communication at the University of Houston, have worked for Rice University and worked in bars and restaurants as a beverage professional, and for one of Texas’ largest wine retailers, Spec’s, while learning about wine and spirits. In 2013, after completing my Master’s studies, I made the leap to working for a family-owned distributor before joining the Boisset family in 2014. My journey as a professional started when I realized that my training in technical writing and communication was most affective when I worked with wine, a subject that I was very interested in. I started by reading books and doing my own writing, but I love that wine can always be a conversation, no matter the audience.

    I have studied with the Society of Wine Educators and completed the CSW and CSS program. I have a Masters in Science of Wine Business from the Burgundy School of Business (class of 2013) and while studying and living in Dijon I began my WSET studies with Steve Charter MW. It took me some time because I found it challenging to balance work and education, but I completed the WSET program and received my Diploma in Wine & Spirits in 2019. As someone who has lived and travelled fairly extensively in France, I found the FWS program very appealing as a way to reconcile a lot of my own experiences with a professional program to enhance and complete gaps in my knowledge. I found that the program helped to clear up a lot of questions I had in regards to wine laws and wine regions and has only added to my own understanding and professional confidence.

    I really enjoyed the French Wine Scholar and decided to enroll in the Italian Wine Scholar program for the summer/fall session this year! Although I have flirted with the idea of applying with the Institute of Masters of Wine, I have not committed to the program at this time. I hope to use my experiences to contribute to the WSET and WSG in the future; I would love to teach and mentor wine professionals.

    The French Wine Scholar program is a specialized program and I help to market and sell French wines in the US; I found the textbook to be an immensely thorough and well-researched guide. I hope my plans for the future will always include French wines. The wines of Burgundy, Beaujolais, Jura, Loire, Rhône and the South of France are a great passion of mine. I have had the opportunity to visit new areas of France professionally with Boisset (Arbois, Brouilly and Languedoc) and on my own (Alsace, Bordeaux, Loire, Rhône, Savoie) and having lived in Burgundy was a dream come true! The FWS has inspired me further to visit new areas for travel and education when time permits; I hope to return to Alsace to discover the terroirs of the Grand Cru, and to visit many areas in Southwest France, Roussillon and Provence someday.

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial I found the textbook to be an immensely thorough and well-researched guide.
    • Position Regional Account Manager and Import Specialist, Boisset Collection
    • Certifications CSW & CSS (Society of Wine Educators), WSET Diploma
    Read more...

    Monica Marin, IWS

    Congratulations to Monica Marin, IWS, for passing the Italian Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Monica:

    I am the Head of Education programs at The Wine House in Los Angeles. I hold a WSET Diploma and I have been in the hospitality and wine business for over 12 years.

    I hold the following certifications: Diploma WSET/FWS/SWS/IWS.  I am also continuing my studies as a Second year MW student .

    The IWS program is a great refresher on every region of Italy !

    We are looking forward to start launching the IWS program in Los Angeles !

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial A great refresher on every region of Italy !
    • Position Director of Education, The Wine House
    • Certifications WSET Diploma, French Wine Scholar, Spanish Wine Scholar
    Read more...

    Yunkyung Lee, FWS

    Congratulations to Yunkyung Lee, FWS, for passing the French Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Yunkyung:

    I have worked as a sommelier and manager in Korea and Singapore. Participated in a national competition 3 times and took the 1st prize in the year of 2007, 2nd prize in 2008 and the 1st prize again in 2009. As a result, in 2009, I participated in 1st Asia-Oceania sommelier competition as the representative of Korea. Since 2010 I’ve been teaching wine and I have started to write my own wine book.

    In 2005, I started my first wine study in the Korean branch of ASI (L’Association de la Sommellerie Internationale), which hosts the world's best sommelier contest every 3 years and the 3 different continental contests (America, Asia-Oceania, Europe) every 3 years. After the one year course I received the certification of “master sommelier & consultant” with a scholarship as the 1st prize award in the license examination.  Then, I enrolled in the WSET programs and received certifications with distinction in level 1/2/3 of wine and level 1 of sake. Through the FWS program I was able to learn much more about French wines which has been a goal of mine for a long time.  The FWS program added to my wine knowledge far beyond the basic level.  I intend to continue my studies of French wines at an advanced level.

    I now intend to start studying for the diploma of wine and level 3 of sake in WSET in London. My first motivation for enrolling FWS program was to strengthen my knowledge of wine before starting my wine diploma studies with WSET in London.  I enrolled in the FWS and SWS programs together during February and March in 2020. It was not easy to study 2 different things at the same time, but was worth it in that I could develop my ability to learn how French wines have developed their characters with various grapes in different natural conditions, how they present themselves using common grapes shared with some Spanish wines, as well as their historical background. My successful completion of the FWS program has given me the courage to pursue more advanced wine studies.

    As stated above, my first motivation for enrolling FWS program was to strengthen my knowledge of wine before starting my wine diploma studies with WSET in London. I found many wine professionals who received the title of “Master of Wine” and/or “Master Sommelier” in the FWS program.  The FWS program delivered much more than I had expected. I particularly appreciated the section about grape varieties based on genetics.  Before participating in FWS program, I had not seen any of that information in books.  It has given me the ambition to study more and the confidence to teach my students with my greater knowledge.



    Additional Info

    • Testimonial It has given me the ambition to study more and the confidence to teach my students with my greater knowledge.
    • Position CEO & Educator, Wineleaders
    • Certifications WSET Levels 1, 2 & 3, Spanish Wine Scholar with highest honors
    Read more...

    Natalie Valdez, FWS

    Congratulations to Natalie Valdez, FWS, for passing the French Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Natalie:

    I am a wine enthusiast whose hobby has become an intense passion so much that the wine school I take courses from has asked me to volunteer at events.  I began like most people, simply enjoying a glass of wine at dinner.  I wanted to understand it enough to know what to order and pair with a meal but was clueless.  After taking WSET 1, the foundation I began to build became a necessity to continue learning.  For me, perhaps more enjoyable than drinking wine (and that is extremely enjoyable) is learning the stories behind it- the vineyards, the winemaking process, the producers, the geographical factors, and most interesting to me- the history.  I just purchased Wine & War by Don & Petie Kladstrup and can’t wait to start after my SWS exam this weekend.  The learning never ends!

    Before learning about Wine Scholar Guild’s programs, I enrolled and passed WSET’s courses, completing level 3 in August 2018.  I also passed the Consejo Regulador DOCa Rioja’s Master of Rioja exam that same year.  FWS added so much depth to my small knowledge base of French wines.  I absolutely love the attention to details that FWS brought about; the course gave me such a large working pool of information that I didn’t want to simply memorize, but understand at a great depth.
    I am taking my Spanish Wine Scholar exam on June 6th- wish me luck!)  I am torn between going to the Italian Wine Scholar next or taking the Master of Alsace or Loire Valley- my two favorite AOCs.  Next year I plan on enrolling in WSET’s Level 4 diploma course.  In addition to these courses, I love taking classes at Florida Wine Academy whether its a Bordeaux Masterclass, Sake course, and of course all they offer during Miami Champagne Week every October.

    The FWS program has already been helpful in my SWS studies.  For example, the format is familiar and I hope to attain similar results.  The text, coursework, online learning modules, and outline of learning objectives really set students up for success.  Also, it is a great base for when I begin the French Master level courses in the near future.

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial I absolutely love the attention to details that FWS brought about; the course gave me such a large working pool of information...
    • Position Wine Enthusiast
    • Certifications WSET Levels 1, 2 & 3
    Read more...

    Inbar Galinsky-Johnson, FWS

    Congratulations to Inbar Galinsky-Johnson, FWS, for passing the French Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Inbar:

    My interest in wine started about 7 years ago after being wowed by Pinot Gris from Alsace. I realized I wanted to know more about wines, and about how to enjoy them more mindfully. My passion gained real momentum, however, over the last three years; this included reading everything I could about wine, taking notes meticulously with every bottle I opened, joining The Wine Society (an excellent co-operative wine merchant in the UK) so I can access a variety of wines and enrolling on courses to enhance my knowledge.

    My day-job couldn’t be more different – I work at a University in the UK, advising and supporting students who struggle with mental health and disability-related difficulties. Curiosity about the wine in my glass had opened a completely different world to me - one which is full of joy, exploration and never-ending learning. The world of wine encompasses geography, history, geology and chemistry… not to mention offering the best excuse to travel – and so there are multitude of ways to learn about it.

    Although I do not work in the wine industry, I recently secured a weekend job as a vineyard and tasting guide in a local winery in Sussex, the county where I live; However I mainly consider myself a (slightly obsessed!) enthusiast, on an infinite learning curve!

    When I realized I wanted to learn in a more structured way about wine and wine tasting, I enrolled on WSET 2, followed by WSET 3, and I passed both with distinction. I loved both courses, but WSET 3 was definitely the more challenging, and helped cement my knowledge about different wine regions and their unique attributes, not to mention the processes involved from cultivating vines to making wine.

    I did both through the wonderful Sussex Wine School, in Brighton where I live, and when I finished WSET 3 I knew that I wanted to enroll on FWS, also through the School; it felt like the next natural step to focus on the French regions I love in more detail. I enjoyed every moment of it, and certainly feel that it added another layer of more detailed knowledge about the wine regions of France, and encouraged me to explore those areas I knew less about. The class tastings helped place each style within the context of its region and its unique terroir. It was also fun to learn alongside other enthusiasts, and it made the whole experience more convivial, all supported by an excellent tutor.

    The opportunity to learn about a specific wine producing country in much more detail had whet my appetite for more learning, and I am now considering enrolling on the Spanish and Italian Wine Scholar. I enjoy exploring French regions and styles much more than before, and although I’m not a wine professional, I feel able to communicate with fellow wine enthusiasts, and share my love and passion for French wines with greater confidence! I’d recommend this course to professionals and wine enthusiasts alike. 

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial I enjoyed every moment of it, and certainly feel that it added another layer of more detailed knowledge about the wine regions of France.
    • Position Wine Enthusiast
    • Certifications WSET Level 2, WSET Level 3
    Read more...

    Karin Rockstad, SWS

    Congratulations to Karin Rockstad, SWS, for passing the Spanish Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!

    About Karin:

    I am a Spanish to English translator specializing in wine. I help Spanish and Latin American wineries showcase their terroirs, vines, winemaking practices, and of course, their amazing wines to English-speaking consumers. During my years living in Spain, I fell in love with the gastronomy there and decided to add it to my translating repertoire. I’m happy to be able to share that with other people who don’t speak Spanish.

    I have passed the WSET Level 3 with merit. The SWS program complemented WSET more specifically to Spain, obviously. It was great to learn more about the smaller DOs.
     
    I am currently studying for the Certified Specialist of Wine and will be enrolling in the FWS program with Vine Lab in the fall. I’m also refreshing my French and Italian language skills and may add those to my translation business. The FWS and IWS would definitely help with that.

    I have poured wines at tastings throughout the Minneapolis area and distributors are interested in getting more quality Spanish wines here. Several of their salespeople were in class with me, and we believe getting the word out about SWS can help in getting people even more excited about Spanish wines.

    Additional Info

    • Testimonial It was great to learn more about the smaller DOs...SWS can help in getting people even more excited about Spanish wines.
    • Position Spanish to English Translator for the wine trade, KRocks Translations
    • Certifications WSET Level 3
    Read more...
    Page 3 of 32

    WSG thanks the following organizations for their support:

     
     
    

    Sign up to receive our latest updates