WINE SCHOOL! OMG Day Drinking now legitimized

7 Jun

I am in the WSETS! Level two!

I call it Somm-er School bwahahahhaah.

I cannot deny a pun.

A wee bit nervous as I skipped level one, but my somm friends advised that I should probably start with two. It is A LOT of information and yet still just scratching the surface. There are levels three and four and then tests to become a wine god. Wine Master. Master of Wine? Something like that. I am just going to live in the now of level two. It is 18 hours of class time then two weeks to study for the test.

Now that my first weekend is done my plan is to make study flashcards and such to review. And to read the next eight chapters we will be covering next week. And diligently taste and think about my wine. And seek out things to smell I am unfamiliar with.

Friday night was the first night. I was extremely curious about who would be in the class. At some point our teacher asked if there were any bloggers in the group and I was the only one to raise my hand which surprised both me and her. Speaking with some of my classmates (so far I’ve met a wine sales rep, a Whole Foods spirits department manager, a law school student and a couple of people who work for restaurant groups), I felt extra-respected as they all seemed curious about what I did. And then I felt extra not respected when in her lecture my teacher threw a wee bit of shade on how we blogger-folk love our metaphors. For the record I have never referred to a wine as smelling like my grandmother’s attic so…okay. Part of the reason I am in this course is in fact to learn how not to always talk about wine in silly metaphors so I should take her comments (they weren’t directed at me, just bloggers in general) with a grain of Himalayan sea salt.

Okay, so Friday night started with reviewing the WSET method of wine tasting. I was about to show a picture of the book page detailing it but I guess maybe I shouldn’t violate copy rite? At any rate they have a very specific way they go about it.

We also discussed wine service, wine and food pairing, plus “social responsibility”. We all giggled like jerks at that last one. Our livers did not.

Our teacher Monica is a lovely woman and very funny. After all that preliminary learning we dove into tasting practice using the WSET way. I now have a growing list of things I need to taste and smell so I can better describe wine. Not a single person in the class, Monica included, has a fucking clue what a gooseberry tastes like. Flavors to learn about!

Day two started bright and early. 9:30 am. Egads. We covered reading labels, factors influencing wine style and price, and the devilish process of wine production. Carbonic maceration? Malolactic fermentation? All discussed. Then we started covering grapes. Six hours and 17 wines later we had talked about Chardonnay, Pinot Noir, Cabernet sauvignon, Merlot, and Sauvignon Blanc. Incidentally I think I only drank about a 1/2-3/4 ounce of each wine so spread out over the course of the day I did not get trashed. And there were spit buckets to utilize. But by the end of the day we all were getting a bit punchy, possibly just from sitting there so long.

It is a nice thing to be in a room of people who aren’t going to make fun of you and all your swirling and “mmmmm, yessssss, cooked strawberries, that is what I taste” thoughts.

So I am getting to meet some new chums too. Bonus. And I actually did hit it off with the woman sitting next to me who is a wine rep for Regal and we went out to do “homework” at the wine bar next door after class which was much fun. And–ooh ooh double bonus–she sent me home with several bottles of the lovely wines she reps which I will expound upon in a separate post. For now suffice to say I verily much have been enjoying a 2013 Famille Perrin La Mille Gigondas. So wine school thus far rocks.

Okay that’s all. Gonna go make some more flashcards because for the life of me I have a hard time keeping Pouilly-Fuisse and Pouilly-Fumé straight.

4 Responses to “WINE SCHOOL! OMG Day Drinking now legitimized”

  1. GiGi Eats Celebrities June 7, 2016 at 6:33 pm #

    BAH HA HA HA AH AHA HA HA AH AH! THIS IS YOUR FRIGGIN’ HEAVEN!!!! DAY DRINKING FOR THE WIN! And um, this is the coolest F-ing program EVER! I need to show it to my bro’s GF who lovessssss WINE just like you!

    • Ellen June 8, 2016 at 5:03 am #

      Do it! She’d love it:)

  2. Effi - the wine sinner June 8, 2016 at 4:27 am #

    Excellent idea! Best of luck with your WSET studies, it is so much fun!

    • Ellen June 8, 2016 at 5:02 am #

      Thank you! Having an amazing time so far!!

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