Advanced Wine Certifications

National Wine School

About Our Advanced Wine Certification

Earn your Advanced Sommelier Pin! In 2008, the National Wine School (NWS) named us the premier Mid-Atlantic school. The Wine School of Philadelphia offers NWS-certified wine courses up to the level of Master level. Classes listed on this page can be taken in conjunction with earning both advanced and master-level qualifications. Before attending these courses, the student should complete the Core Wine Course.

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Advanced Sommelier Pin
Advanced Sommelier Pin

Advanced Sommelier Pin (L4)

To earn the  Advanced Sommelier pin, the student must complete four sections of the Advanced program. At the National Wine School, the Advanced Sommelier Certification is awarded. Each section of the Advanced program also comes with its own certification. For instance, a student can earn a winemaking certification in a single semester. Students are not required to complete the Advanced Sommelier program to earn these individual world-class certifications. 

Four of the following credentials must be earned to qualify for the Advanced Sommelier Pin.

  • Italian Wine Specialist™
  • American Wine Specialist™
  • Spanish Wine Specialist™
  • French Wine Specialist™
  • Food & Wine Scholar™
  • Master in Wine™ Certification
  • Wine Instructor Certification
  • Advanced Winemaker Certification
  • Specialist in Spirits, East Coast Wine Scholar (at-home)
  • Advanced Beer Brewing Certification
  • Scholar in Mediterranean Wine™
  • German Wine Specialist™

Master In Wine™ Certification (L5)

Master-Level Sommelier certification is one of the top achievements in the wine trade. It is only awarded to the top 1% of sommeliers and wine professionals. As of 2022, The Wine School of Philadelphia is offering the highest level of wine certification. The National Wine School underwrites this master program.

For this certification, the candidate must complete the following programs:

  • Italian Wine Specialist™
  • American Wine Specialist™
  • Spanish Wine Specialist™
  • French Wine Specialist™
  • Food & Wine Scholar™
  • Master in Wine™ Certification
  • Wine Instructor Certification
  • Advanced Winemaker Certification

The candidate also must complete two of the following elective courses:

  • Specialist in Spirits™
  • East Coast Wine Scholar (at-home)
  • Advanced Beer Brewing Certification
  • Scholar in Mediterranean Wine™
  • German Wine Specialist™.

Several agencies certify master-level sommeliers; each has its trademark.   Master of Wine, Master SOMM,  Diploma Oenotrope, and  Master Sommelier all refer to the same credentials: a Level 5 Sommelier Certification. We must stress that we are not affiliated with the Court of Master Sommeliers. We do not support the court for many reasons, including the disturbing and credible reports leveled against them (link)(link). Therefore, we do not offer their Master Sommelier qualification.

America’s Sommelier School

The National Wine School (NWS)’s offices are located in California and Delaware. The school offers the highest level of accreditation for sommeliers in America. NWS provides the same national and international certification level as the Court of Master Sommeliers and the Wine & Spirit Education Trust. Plus, the NWS offers professional California certification, which no other agency can offer.

Wine courses should be fun and engaging. Accreditation shouldn’t be boring. It doesn’t need TV shows or movies. It’s about ensuring that people who earn the qualification can earn their sommelier certification, no matter where they go to school. Not only is this the right thing to do, but it’s also the law.

The National Wine School is the highest-rated sommelier school for a reason. They don’t hire PR firms, and they aren’t movie stars. Instead, we offer industry-grade sommelier exams, accreditation, and professional certification. Their protocols are used in universities and trade schools, including some of the top wine schools in America.

Commonly Questions About Advanced Sommeliers

How many advanced sommeliers are there?

There are thousands of advanced sommeliers. Reporting on exact numbers is not available. as there are several bodies that issue Advanced Sommelier certifications and reporting is not uniform.

Do sommeliers wear pins?

Sommeliers who have earned a credential from either the Court of Master Sommeliers or the National Wine School are permitted to wear a sommelier pin.

What is the highest level of sommelier?

The Level Five Certification is the highest level of sommelier certification. There are three major bodies that issue an L5 certification: the Court of Master Sommeliers, the National Wine School, and the Wine & Spirit Education Trust.

How many levels of sommeliers are there?

There are five levels of wine certification, from Level One to Level Five. Level one is relatively easy to obtain. Once a student has earned their Level Three certification, they are typically considered a sommelier. The Level Four certification is commonly known as the Advanced Sommelier certification, and the Level Five is considered a master-level credential.

Can a sommelier pin be replaced?

There are currently no services for a certified sommelier pin replacement for most of the United States. However, students in the Mid-Atlantic can have their NWS pins replaced: https://www.wineschool.us/wine-school-of-philadelphia/

Are their standard colors for sommelier pins?

There are no standard sommelier pin colors, but most are either red, blue, or black with silver or gold overlays. This included the WSET lapel pin colors.

Can I Buy a Sommelier Pin?

It is unlikely to see a certified sommelier pin for sale. Most sommelier schools keep track of who has a sommelier pin and will investigate if a pin goes up for sale.

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