• Wine and Cheese Tasting Manchester

    Wine and Cheese Tasting Manchester

    We're delighted to announce our new event-French Wine & Cheese tasting

    We would love to treat you to the heavenly combination of French Wine and Cheese Tasting Manchester. Which delicious wine goes with which fantastic cheese? You will have the chance to find out at our new French wine and cheese tasting event in Central Manchester.

    France is a cheese lover's heaven and the French take their cheese very seriously indeed. On any trip to France you can see market stalls groaning under the weight of a huge array of cheeses. Supermarkets have counters stretching as far as the eye can see, laden with dozens of mouthwatering varieties, every shape and size imaginable.

    Every region of France has its own particular cheeses. Over 400 at the last count and if you add in the varieties of each type, the total shoots up to nearly 1000. That's a lot of cheese! Many of the best cheeses are bound by rules and regulations which ensure that quality and traditions are upheld.

    The French treat their cheese with an astounding level of reverence, pride and care.

    Discover the Variety of Cheeses in France

    The French use mainly three types of milk for their cheese, cow's, goat's and ewe's. Although one enterprising cheesemaker from Alencon is using horse milk!

    There are traditionally three main families of cheeses. Here are a few examples of the most famous and tasty types of French cheese, some of which we may be choosing for our wine and cheese tasting in Manchester:

    Pressed

    These are hard cheeses similar to the ones we have in The UK.

    • Comté-a delicious cooked cheese made in Eastern France sometimes aged for over 6 months
    • Cantal-a tasty uncooked cheese from The Auvergne mountains. Often aged to increase strength and flavour
    • Tomme des Pyrénées-a hard mild cheese with a distinctive black skin
    • Reblochon-a rich soft cheese with a strong flavour made in The Alps

    Soft

    A soft fresh cheese with a bloomy edible rind .

    • Brie de Meaux-a mild creamy cheese made to the East of Paris
    • Camembert-a soft runny cheese, from Normandy presented in a box
    • Epoisses-a strong rind washed soft cheese from Burgundy
    • Goat's cheese-fresh and spreadable with a farmyard flavour

    Blue

    A semi-soft cheese, ripened and affected by mould.

    • Roquefort-a blue cheese made from ewe's milk in The Pyrénées
    • Fourme d'Ambert-a mild cheese with a nutty flavour from The Auvergne
    • Bleu des Causses-a crumbly cow's milk cheese with a strong flavour. From The South of France
    • Bleu de Gex-a hard but mild blue cheese from the Swiss border

    This is only a small sample of the French cheeses on offer. At our French Wine and Cheese Tasting Manchester we will select the best styles available in The UK with wines carefully chosen to bring out the range of flavours. Come along and discover your favourites at our new French wine and cheese tasting event in Central Manchester. See full details on our French Wine and Cheese Event page.

    You will also find more great events, many involving food as well as cheese on The Premium Course Page

    Cheese and wine tasting Manchester

    Cheese and wine tasting Manchester

    Wine and Cheese Tasting Manchester

    Wine and Cheese Manchester

  • Wine Tasting Manchester-What to Expect

    Take a Peek at Our Events

    You will get an idea about how our fun and friendly Manchester wine tasting courses are run. See how the tables are set up and what we can offer you whether you come to one of our regular sessions or book a private party.

    As you will see in the short video, some of our Manchester wine tasting courses involve food & wine matching. The Wine & Cheese event is one of those shown being set up. This is one of our most popular wine tasting courses. See details on this page.

    Of course we run lots of wine tastings in Manchester including events for business get togethers and hen parties. See what we can offer you on our All Courses Page.

  • Which of our Manchester Wine Tastings Should You Choose?

    Ready to Pour Wine

    Ready to Pour Wine

    It's Something We're Often Asked

    You run so many different Manchester based wine tasting courses-which should I choose?

    This is an understandable reaction particularly if you haven't been to one of our wine tastings before. Or if you haven't been to a wine tasting event ever!

    So let's try to make it easier for you to choose. This could be a choice for you or a gift of one of our Manchester Wine Tasting Courses for a friend, work mate or relative.

    The Obvious First Choice-Our Discovery Course

    You can't go wrong with our Discovery Events
    as they are designed to be an introduction to wine tasting. This makes them an ideal place to start your wine tasting journey here in Manchester.

    However you or other members of your party may be a little bit more experience. Or you may have a particular interest in a certain region or style of wine. In that case...

    The World of Wine Courses May Fit The Bill

    Our World of Wine events explore the subject in more detail. You may be going to Spain, Italy or Australia for example and would like to find out more about their wines. These tastings in Manchester are a super way to explore each country's produce in more depth.

    Finally you may love all kinds of bubbly and want to know more about it. Or you may want to explore the finer arts of wine and food matching. If so...

    Our Premium Courses Are For You

    Wine and food matching, wine and cheese and of course a specialist Fizz Tasting are all here.

    These courses are popular all year round but are specially so in the run up to Christmas.

    All of our Events Make Great Gifts

    Don't forget that you can buy all these courses as gifts for someone special. Our gift vouchers don't run out so they can be used at any time. Find out about our Manchester Wine Tastings and Courses as gifts here.

  • How To Get a Wine and Spirits Education

    Wine & Spirit Education

    Wine & Spirit Education

    ​Last updated 4th. October 2017

    What Wine & Spirits Courses Are There in the UK?

    Do you want or need wine qualifications to further your career? OK so you want to learn about wine. Maybe to learn how to become a Sommelier. Perhaps you want to take a degree course or undertake postgraduate study. What are your options here in the UK?​

    We will outline the major routes you can follow ​studying wine and spirits. Find out what they involve and which careers they could open up for you if you become qualified.

    The Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET)

    Awarded The Queen's Award for Enterprise in 2015, WSET continues to grow. From its London base it has seen its courses taken in every part of the globe. China has become one of its biggest success stories.

    WSET qualifications are highly valued by those in the trade. But members of the public are increasingly undertaking them too.​

    WSET Courses

    • Level 1 Award in Wines
    • Level 1 Award in Spirits
    • Level 1 Award in Sake
    • Level 2 Award in Wines & Spirits
    • Level 2 Award in Spirits
    • Level 3 Award in Wines
    • Level 3 Award in Sake
    • Level 4 Diploma

    Notes

    Candidates who want to try for Master of Wine must achieve level 4 Diploma, or a degree in Oenology or Viticulture first

    Possible Careers

    The higher level qualifications, ie: Level 3 & Diploma open up the more managerial and supervisory roles. Other experience may be necessary like in marketing and sales.

    However, please bear in mind that the wine and spirits world is relatively small. The last decade especially has seen a lot of mergers within the industry, meaning a lot of brands are owned by a few companies. Therefore it is highly competitive, and salaries tend to be quite modest- even in senior positions. Though there are often plenty of perks to make up for not earning a fortune- such as free supplier tastings, discounts and exclusive money can't buy experiences such as personal tours/visits to wineries abroad.

    Most people do this work for the love of their job, and the product. They tend to stay in the job for a long time when it comes to sociable and rewarding roles like Wine and Spirits Educators, Brand Ambassadors etc. This can make it hard to break into these careers especially, as entry level positions are rare and usually highly sought after. 

    It's not all about galavanting all over the world and going to trade exhibitions and tastings with free samples. Quite often many jobs in the industry involve irregular or long/late hours. You will need to be aware of this, particularly if you are involved in the organisation of any events or front of house service and retail.

    Example roles include:

    Wine and Spirit Buyers

    Wine and Spirit Marketing Specialist

    Events Manager

    Wholesalers

    Supermarkets

    Pubs, Restaurants, Bars and Hotels

    Sommeliers (See next section)

    Administration


    The Court of Master Sommeliers (CMS)

    Established to improve the level of beverage service in hotels and restaurants. They run courses in The UK and throughout the world.

    WSET and CMS recently got together to make clear how you can aim to achieve the CMS's highest qualifications. Click to see PDF version.

    Sommelier Development Pathway

    Sommelier Development Pathway

    The CMS Courses and Qualifications

    These are aimed squarely at people already working in the industry. 

    However you can see from the chart above how you can use WSET qualifications to break into the profession.​

    • Introductory Sommelier Certificate
    • Certified Sommelier
    • Advanced Sommelier
    • Master Sommelier Diploma

    Possible Careers

    Obviously this is a specialism. Bear in mind however that these qualifications will help advance careers.

    Well qualified and experienced sommeliers will help improve all staff skills and should be a highly valued member of any team. They end up in a number of positions in different sectors within the industry, they are not just confined to restaurants.


    Institute of Masters of Wine

    Regarded by the industry as the very highest wine qualification available. There are only about 300 in the world.

    The exams are notoriously difficult. You will need a WSET Diploma (itself a 2 year course!) before you can begin to consider an MW qualification. You also need to be proposed/recommended by an existing Master of Wine or someone senior in the industry, and sit their entrance exam first.

    Possible Careers

    The world really is your oyster if you achieve this one. MW's act as wine buyers and advisers. Some appear on TV, are wine writers or are brand representatives. They may also judge wine competitions, and many of them travel the world to do these things.


    British Universities

    Two British universities offer wine related qualifications-Plumpton College in Sussex and The Royal Agricultural University in Gloucestershire.

    Plumpton College

    Since the late 1990's has run the only English language Wine Production and Wine Business Courses in Europe. 

    The college has purpose built labs., teaching rooms, commercial winery ​and sensory evaluation room. The UK Wine Research Centre is also based there.

    Plumpton has close associations with English wine producers and ​even has a working vineyard. They produce their own Plumpton College Sparkling Wine.

    Courses Include:

    Viticulture and Oenology BSc (Hons) Degree

    Viticulture and Oenology Masters Degree

    Wine Business Foundation Degree

    Wine Business Top Up Degree BSc (Hons)

    The Royal Agricultural University

    You can study here for postgraduate qualifications in Wine Business Management.

    Their MSc in Business Management offers a choice of modules including:​

    • Viticulture and Vinification
    • Wine Industry
    • Wine Study Tour

    Possible Careers

    Advanced careers possible needing a high level of technical skills. Including:

    Vineyard Manager, Viticultural Consultant (e.g. soil management & pest control), Winemaker and Wine Quality Controller for the wine trade,


    Wine Courses in Other Countries

    Their wine studies are outside the scope of this post of course!

    There are many famous universities in wine growing regions like Bordeaux, Australia and The USA. Maybe we'll cover some of those in a future article!​


    Conclusion

    I hope I have given you a taste of how you can study this fascinating subject.

    Right here in The UK too!​

    You might say we're biased but we think WSET courses, exams and qualifications are hard to beat.

    Here's why:​

    • You don't have to be employed in the industry when you do them
    • You start at the lower levels and work up from there
    • WSET Courses can be joined locally and done in your spare time
    • Do them out of interest as well as for career development

    Make sure you join our WSET mailing list. This is just for people like you who want to keep in touch with our plans. It is only used to keep you informed about WSET courses and nothing else.

  • Why WSET Courses are Important

    Customer Interest in Wine is Growing

    It is important that staff are able to talk to customers about:

    • ​The wine list.
    • Taste and food matching.
    • Where the wine comes from.
    • How the wine is produced.

    Of course the same principles apply to knowledge of spirits too!

    WSET Courses Are Held in High Regard

    Why are the courses of this not for profit organisation valued so much?

    • ​WSET's highly respected courses have been around for decades
    • Many jobs in the industry require these qualifications.
    • The different tiers mean that a novice can begin studying and aspire to reach higher and higher levels of knowledge.
    • The structured learning appeals to both those inside and outside the industry.

    What WSET Course Should I Take?

    Level 1 Wine

    • For a beginner wanting to learn more about wine.
    • Consists of a one day course with an exam at the end of the day.
    • The exam is made up of 30 multiple choice questions.

    Level 1 Spirits

    • For the novice needing to know more.
    • Covers basic knowledge and identification of spirits.
    • One day course followed by a 30 multiple choice question exam.

    Level 2 Wines and Spirits

    • Three day course.
    • Designed to increase your ability to discuss basic wine theory.
    • Apply your knowledge to sales, service and storage of wines and spirits.
    • You will taste a range of different wine samples.
    • A 50 question multiple choice exam. concludes the final day.
    • You don't have to have done level 1, but it may help.

    Level 3 Wines and Spirits

    • Seven day course.
    • Level three wine tasting technique.
    • Learn about the production and distribution of wine.
    • An exam on the last day, consisting of three parts:
    • Part one is a blind tasting of two wines.
    • Part two is a 50 multiple choice question paper.
    • Part three consists of short written answers.
    • You don't have to have done level 2, but it is recommended that you do.
    • You will need to put in even more private study for level 3.

    More WSET Details Here

    See more details on our page here:

    WSET Website Page

    See the WSET website qualification page here: