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CWAS Coming to Las Vegas

Homework Roederer Estates Brut (Mendocino County) vs. Mumm Napa Brut (Napa Valley)

Roederer Estates Brut (Mendocino County) vs. Mumm Napa Brut (Napa Valley)

Most people do not need a reason to spend a few days in Las Vegas. The glitter, lights, shows food, beverages and a chance of winning all allure people to the city from near and afar. It makes sense in the city that has the most sommeliers in the world, that wine would be an important subject for wine enthusiasts. The San Francisco Wine School will offer a three-day intensive course for the California Wine Appellation Specialist certificate from March 27th – 29 at the Signature at the MGM Grand.

The course will cover most of the California appellations. Attendees will sample wines from those appellations while they learn what makes the appellations unique. I took the online version of the course during the summer of 2014. I was surprised to learn why so many areas of California can grow and craft Pinot Noir wines. The weather and soil certainly plays a role in what grows where, so much so that a mile or two away can change what is grown and what wines are made.

The three-day intensive course begins at 8:30 am on Friday March 27th. Friday’s session ends at 5:30 pm and includes breakfast and lunch. On Saturday, March 28th the course also runs from 8:30 am until 5:30 pm with breakfast and lunch included. Sunday’s time runs from 8:30 am until 3:30 pm and includes breakfast and lunch. There is a special tasting dinner on Saturday evening with David Glancy at the Honey Salt for an additional cost. The final exam is given online and will be available after the course is completed. If you pass the exam, you will be designated California Wine Appellation Specialist and may use the post-nominal CWAS. The cost of the three-day intensive course is $1,495. You can find more information about the course and register on the San Francisco Wine School website.

I really enjoyed the content of this course. I had previously visited many of the wine areas in California and since the course, Kathy and I have visited three additional appellations. With the online version, you have to purchase your own wines. That did add up over the several week course format of one lesson per week. I also enjoyed the conversations with classmates. The course is well organized and you will feel as though you learned something after you finish it. I made flash cards to study for the final exam, however with a simple Internet search you can download the flash cards to a tablet or phone and study them on those devices.

Terry Sullivan CWAS

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