Fine Vintage Sommelier Level 1 Certification Program

The Fine Vintage Sommelier Level 1 Certification Program is designed for those who work in the hospitality industry and want to work towards their Sommelier designation. The program was developed by James Cluer MW in collaboration with several professionally trained, experienced, and certified Sommeliers.

The course will provide an in-depth training on the subject of food and wine pairing, service protocol for various styles of wine and a focus on refining your tasting abilities. This includes learning how to formulate a wine list and how to run a successful wine program including the coaching of restaurant staff. Other topics include methods of buying, selling, and inventory management and much more. Students will have an opportunity to also explore the world of sake, beer and spirits giving a comfort level with the serving and pairing of these trendy beverages.

Having the training and credential of the Fine Vintage Sommelier (FVS) Level 1 Certification is a tremendous advantage to those working to develop their career in hospitality. This program will give you the knowledge combined with a greater understanding of the industry."
James Cluer,
Master of Wine

Those who successfully complete this course will be able to use the post-nominal FVS (Fine Vintage Sommelier) Level 1 Certification.

The course is run over 3 full days. At the end of the 3rd day there will be an exam that runs over the course of an hour and 15 minutes. This includes a blind tasting assessment of one wine with a suggested food pairing and a 50 question multiple-choice exam. The exam is focused on the material taught during the course but also includes a variety of general knowledge questions on wine. The pass mark is 65% in both the theory and tasting portions of the exam.

In order to register for this course you must have successfully completed the WSET Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits. You will need to bring a copy of your certificate or transcript to the course.    

Course format: This course takes place over 3 full days from 9.30 am until 5.30 pm with a 50 minute break for lunch.

Instructors: All instructors are trained and certified Sommeliers who have run successful wine programs at some of the finest restaurants. The name of the Instructor in each city is noted on the registration page.      

Course content: You can download the course outline here. 

Tastings: During this course you will taste over 48 wines, beers, spirits and sakes showcasing a wide variety of styles. Each beverage will be discussed in-depth, covering taste profile, ideal food pairings, price/quality ratio, where it might fit in a wine program, and how to propose it to a guest.

Price: $799 total, including tax. If you do not have a set of 6 ISO tasting glasses, you will need to purchase a set from us at an additional cost of $45.

Materials: Included in the price is a study guide. This is e-mailed so you can read it prior to the course. At the actual course you will receive a printed version.

Examination: The Fine Vintage Sommelier Level 1 Certification exam takes place at the very end of the last day of the course, at 4:00 pm and lasts for 1 hour and 15 minutes. There is a written blind tasting of one wine where students are required to properly assess the wine and select a suitable food pairing. The theory portion consists of a closed-book exam of 50 multiple-choice questions. The FVS  Level 1 credential will be conferred on those who achieve a score of 65% or higher, in both the theory and tasting portions of the exam. Upon successful completion you will be mailed a Fine Vintage Sommelier Level 1 certificate.

Who takes these courses? Many people want to be officially certified as a Sommelier. If you are seeking to work towards becoming a certified Sommelier or work in a fine-dining environment and would like to expand your knowledge then this program will give you the confidence and credentials to do so.    

TO REGISTER please click on the city where you wish to take the course: Calgary | Toronto | Kelowna | Vancouver

Registration Terms: When you register online, your credit card is charged a $100 deposit. The remaining payment for all fees will be automatically processed in full 3 weeks prior to the course start date on the credit card provided.

The full course tuition (deposit plus remainder payment) is 100% non-refundable from the date you register. But your course fees are transferable as a credit to another course date, or to another person, once. This transfer request must be made in writing three weeks prior to the start of the 1st class. Transfer requests received after this time will not be accepted and you will forfeit your full payment.

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