Congratulations to Mark Capra, IWS, for passing the Italian Wine Scholar exam with highest honors!
I made a career change to enter the wine trade 3 years ago. In the short time I have been involved, I have learnt a lot but felt the need to accelerate learning and take some courses to have more in-depth knowledge in certain areas. Most of my holidays now involve trips to wine regions and vineyards and I feel fortunate that, what once was a hobby and interest, has now become a career.
I completed the Wine Scholar Guild French Wine Scholar (FWS) with Highest Honours in 2018, which spurred me on to complete the IWS in 2019. I am enrolled in the WSET Level 4 Diploma in Wines in January 2020. As well as giving me a head start at the D3 Wines of the World unit, I anticipate both Wine Scholar Guild courses should prepare me also for D4 Sparkling Wines and D5 Fortified Wines units.
The IWS programme has made me want to visit other regions within Italy - I have recently returned from Alba, Piemonte, and used it as a spring board to visit Barolo, Barbaresco and Langhe Hills. It’s also made me pay much closer attention to soil types, elevation and vinification. I’m hoping to gain much better knowledge of Viticulture with the WSET Diploma. On a professional level, I feel achieving the IWS with Highest Honours has given me more credibility as it is a difficult country to study with the myriad of grape types and synonyms/clones as well as its history.