Congratulations to Karen Ann Sutherland, IWS, for passing the Italian Wine Scholar exam with highest honors with LaSalle College in Vancouver !
About Karen Ann Sutherland:
"I studied for a year in Alsace France and worked for four years in Basel Switzerland, Beaune France and Breuberg Germany, enjoying the wines of each country. I came back to Canada passionate about wine, going to tastings whenever possible. A ski accident freed-up my hours dedicated to sports and resulted in getting hooked on more serious wine studies.
I would love to combine my engineering background in water and wastewater treatment with vineyard and winery management and sustainability.
I completed the French Wine Scholar with Honours before starting the WSET Level IV Diploma. The FWS prepared me for the more intense studying required for the Diploma and provided a solid foundation for the section on France during the Diploma.
I completed the Diploma in two years in June 2016 and the Italian Wine Scholar happened to be offered for the first time in September 2016. The Diploma gave me a good foundation for the IWS but having completed the FWS, I looked forward to the more in depth studying of the various regions I knew the IWS would require. In addition, I knew that Mark Shipway, our instructor at the LaSalle College in Vancouver, previously the Art Institute, would provide a great selection of all the grapes and wines, both well-known and rare.
I prefer courses which include class tastings so I do not have any wine studies on my plate for the moment. However, I am looking to advance my vineyard and winery knowledge and integrate this with my current “day job”.
I travelled to northern Italy in January 2017, just after completing the Northern section of the IWS. My recently acquired Italian wine knowledge allowed me to converse knowledgeably with locals who made my visit a trip of a life-time. I hope to travel to Southern Italy in the near future, and look forward to trying the local wines and dishes that made me salivate while I studied.
Before starting my wine studies, I shied away from Italian wines as I my knowledge was limited to the Chianti fiascos and Soaves from the 1980’s. Now, I am keen to introduce my friends and people who come to New District wine store Italian wines and hope that the wine store will expand their Italian wine selection.
Being more well-versed in Italian wines allows me to identify rare gems at tastings, which is always enjoyable."