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How Do I Become a Wine Specialist?

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  • Written By: Jessica F. Black
  • Edited By: Shereen Skola
  • Last Modified Date: 18 November 2016
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To become a wine specialist, you will need to successfully complete a wine education certification program. There are several levels of certification and you will need to research employment opportunities to determine the certification requirements for different positions. The most common jobs in this profession include wine consultant, wine buyer, and retail specialist. Certification may not be required for all positions in this field but an advanced knowledge of wine will improve your chances to become a wine specialist.

You will need to find a program that correlates with your career choice, and most wine education programs are found at privately funded institutions. Although many education programs offered to help you become a wine specialist are only several days long, there are more intense programs available. To increase employment opportunities, you may want to consider completing a wine specialist certification course and a wine educator program. The combination of both courses will prepare you to work in several different positions in this profession including being able to teach courses on wine.

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An educator course may take several years and usually covers topics including specialty wines, the global business of wine and spirits, and wine production. These courses are also hands-on training opportunities, so most coursework is completed on location as opposed to on-line. Courses offered through the Internet may only be preparation for certification exams, and most employers will want to see that you have experience in handling wine. Exams and preparation guides are relatively expensive, so live courses can allow you to learn about wine tasting and production first hand. Most schools are equipped to administer the official certification examination and the price of the exam could be included in your overall tuition.

Some students choose to enroll in master wine courses, which are more advanced and cover highly specific topics. These courses could cover topics including master wine tasting and master wine production. Master tasting courses can prepare you to become a wine specialist by teaching you about the quality, appearance, and style of individual wines. Production courses are focused on the various techniques used to make wine, as well as methods used to grow grapes.

It's important to enroll in as many courses as possible to successfully become a wine specialist. There are many consultant and educator positions that will require several certifications in the field, and you will need to display an enhanced knowledge of wine. Once you have completed your education and training, create a resume that reflects all of your expertise in the field.

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