I passed.  What you may ask….a 100 question multiple choice test administered by the Society of Wine Educators.  You must get 75% + correct to pass and achieve the status of “Certified Wine Specialist.”  Well I did!!  Although some friends of mine prefer to call me a “Certified Wine Snob.”  The CWS designation is no easy task. Quite frankly after I achieved the CTC (Certified Travel Counselor) designation 12 years ago, I didn’t think I would take another course again.  But I was wrong.  You have to follow your passion.

So what did I have to know for this exam.  Just about everything about wine, viticulture, the wine regions of the world, what is grown where, along with soil types etc…  You name it, we had to know it.

  • What Pradikat level may be vinified dry?
  • How many grape varieties are allowed in a Chateauneuf-de-Pape?
  • Where is Monthelie located?
  • Good sweet valued wines are found in what region of Austria?
  • What is the term used to describe an estate bottled wine from Germany?
  • An unpleasant odor in wine described as smelling like garlic or onions is?
  • The soil type of the Champagne region in France is?
I studied and ignored my family Thanksgiving weekend, and it did payed off.  But my education doesn’t stop here.  I don’t know if I will go on to become a Certified Wine Educator, but I do know that understanding wine is an ongoing education that I will continue to study.