"The Wine School is a great place to build knowledge and pursue your passion." Jonathan Newman, Former Chairman of the PLCB
"We would never be where we are today without your class." Richard Smock of Outpost Winery, Napa Valley
Founded in 2001, the Wine School of Philadelphia is the largest independent Wine School in the United States. Since then, we have become the gold standard for wine education.
Outside of a university, we are the only wine school in America that offers professional certification coupled with an independently developed curriculum. In fact, our programs have been utilized in whole and in part by numerous universities, including Drexel and UPenn.
Our professional wine certifications include semester-long programs that culminate in a full two-year Diploma. These programs are the core of the Wine School: our professional graduates number in the thousands, and have gone on to become sommeliers, winemakers, suppliers, executives, and restaurateurs. For an overview of our certifications, click here.
We train our students to understand wine from it's core. The Wine Foundation course is a sensory training program inspired by work done at the University of California at Davis and the Monell Institute of the University of Pennsylvania.
In this program, you will learn to become a masterful wine taster: one that can out-perform most sommeliers. All academic students begin here or in the Core program (see below).
The world of wine is a rapidly evolving place. Reading a few books on wine is simply not enough anymore.
The Global Intermediate Program is updated quarterly to give the student a wide and accurate understanding of the cultures, economics, and histories that are essential to wine production in the 21st Century.
The student completes this program with an understanding of the wines of all the major wine regions.
The Core Certification program includes both the Foundation and the Intermediate programs in a single semester.
The Core is a complete wine education that covers all the essential aspects of wine that results in our two essential wine certifications: the Foundation and the Global Intermediate.
Along with a tour-de-force wine education, the student realizes significant savings.
Advanced certifications cover the complexities of terroir and winemaking for the greatest wine regions in the world.
To earn the Advanced Certification, students must complete 4 sections of Advanced offerings.
The Diploma is available only to those who have successfully completed the Foundation, Global Intermediate, and Advanced Certification programs.
Candidates must successfully complete and defend their thesis to be considered for the Diploma.
"The wine school is great for learning."
Ben Franco, Owner of Winedown Cafe and Wine Bar
"I love this place!"
Earn your Wine Diploma
The first step is our critically acclaimed cours a dégustation, the Wine Foundation Program. This course gives the students the techniques and knowledge to become extraordinary wine tasters. Learn to unravel the hidden flavors of wine, and to develop the coveted skill of blind tasting.
The next leap is to take your palate on a world tour of wine. In the Global Course in Wine/Intermediate Certificate, the student is exposed to all the major wines and wine regions of the world. A highly detailed program, Global offers our students everything needed to master the global vineyard.
Most of our students take both programs, and they graduate with a level of skill & knowledge that could make Robert Parker blush. For the most ardent of wine students, we also proudly offer the Core Wine Certificate Program, which combines both programs in a single semester and saves the student hundreds of dollars.
Finally, we offer the Advanced Wine Program. The last step toward the coveted Diploma Oenotropae, the Advanced Program consists of four semesters of study. This semester, we are offering the Burgundy & Rhone section.
For questions regarding our academic programs, please contact Keith Wallace at 1-800-817-7351, extension 55.
At the Wine School, we field many questions about what we do. Here are a few answers:
- Do you run a viticulture school?
No, for a masters degree you will want to enroll in the programs at the University of California at Davis, Cornell, or Oregon State.
- Do you offer Wine Scholarships?
That would be really cool, eh? We offer very competitive pricing, but no scholarships.
- Do you offer WSET classes?
We offer National Wine School classes, not WSET (Wine & Spirit Education Trust) classes. The difference is largely a British vs American style of teaching. We opt for a participatory experience rather than a read-and-recite method.
- Do you offer a wine degree?
No! A degree must be issued by a regionally-accredited university or college, such as Drexel or University of Pennsylvania.
We are a small private school, and are proud to offer the Diploma Oenotropae.