Interested in expanding your knowledge of wines? Whether you're an industry professional or simply a wine enthusiast, this hands-on course takes you on a journey through the winemaking process, from grape to glass. Learning from world-renowned industry experts from Cornell, you will learn to successfully identify the components of wine and how they affect perceptions before exploring your personal palate and conducting sensory evaluation, using sight, smell, taste, and touch. You will explore various wine growing techniques and analyze how geography and climate impact the grape. Finally, you will identify the correct service and storage approaches to use based on the type and style of wine.

This program is intended for use by persons of legal drinking ages under the relevant applicable laws where they reside. Students will need to purchase wine, sugar, and other items commonly found in grocery stores to participate in tasting exercises.

This course will break down the four biggest growing and producing regions in the United States: California, Washington, Oregon, and New York. Each state has its own unique history, landscape and laws. You will explore the history of each region, as well as analyze the unique geographic features of each state and how they impact the wine. You will also read and interpret wine labels to better select wines from each region.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

In this course, your United States wine journey will culminate with a wine tasting experience. You will select and compare wines from different areas of the United States, while exploring how the wine market is set up and how to choose the right foods for your wines. Then you will prepare for a casual, at-home wine tasting, analyzing how different people interpret different wines, how wines differ from each other, and comparing your expectations vs perceptions.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of California, the Pacific Northwest, and New York Wines

Important: Alternatives can be made for those who do not drink alcohol, who are in areas where alcohol purchases or consumption are not allowed, or who are in circumstances where in-person gatherings are either not allowed or not recommended.

This course will guide you in exploring eight important wine regions of France: Alsace, Bordeaux, Burgundy, Champagne, Loire Valley, Rhône Valley, Languedoc-Roussillon, and Provence. You will start with an overview of the French wine laws and classification system, then you will begin your study of each region. Within each region, you will consider its unique history with winemaking, how the climate affects grape growing and winemaking, the grape varietals and wine styles most associated with that region, and its unique classification system and labeling requirements, You will finish your course by selecting a winery from four of the regions and researching them, along with a specific wine from each, to summarize how these varied aspects of wine production — climate, viticulture, winemaking practices, and classifications — work together to produce the great French wines that are known and respected worldwide.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

In this course, your journey with French wines culminates with a wine-tasting experience. You will select and compare two to six wines from the eight wine regions we studied. In addition to reviewing important wine label terms, you will explore how the French wine market works and the factors affecting wine prices. You will then prepare for a casual, at-home wine tasting, which includes selecting wines to share and determining appropriate food pairings. During your event, you will observe how different people interpret different wines. You will also consider the ways in which the wines are distinct from each other and compare your expectations to your experiences as well as the experiences of your guests.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of French Wines

Important: Alternatives can be made for those who do not drink alcohol, who are in areas where alcohol purchases or consumption are not allowed, or who are in circumstances where in-person gatherings are either not allowed or not recommended.

Taken as a whole, Italian wines are dynamic and offer a wide variety within the different growing regions of the country. 

In this course, you will explore the history of viticulture and winemaking in Italy and analyze the unique geographic features of the regions and how they impact the various wines. You will also read and interpret wine labels to select wines to meet a desired experience.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

It is wonderful to learn and study wines, but your journey is best completed once you experience the wines.

In this course, you will consider the wine-producing regions located within the four geographic zones of Italy and select two to four wines to share in a wine event. You will be guided through the process of selecting, sharing, and obtaining others' opinions about the wines you choose. You will deepen your understanding of Italian wines and hopefully be encouraged to continue learning. Because each part of the course project must be completed in order, we recommend you review all the project pages before you start the course to plan your time accordingly.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of Italian Wines

In this course, you will explore the history of viticulture and winemaking in Spain and Portugal. By analyzing the unique geographic features within the countries, you will gain insights into the many factors that impact which grape varieties are grown and the characteristics of the wines produced. You will also consider the many styles of wines from these countries and prepare to read and interpret wine labels to select wines to meet a desired experience, sparking discussion and engagement for you and your guests.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

This course may not physically take you to Spain or Portugal, but, through the process of selecting, tasting, and sharing wines, your taste buds may believe you've been there.

In this course, you will select two to five wines from the countries of Spain and Portugal to share in a wine event. To prepare, you will research the wines and wineries to determine what information to share with your guests. You will then be guided through the process of thoroughly preparing a virtual or in-person wine-sharing event, including how to determine which foods to pair with your wines and which glasses would best showcase your wines, as well as how to obtain others' opinions of the wines. This learning experience is sure to challenge your palate, create conversation, and encourage your study of wines from your region and beyond.

Because of the steps required to plan and host your event, we strongly recommend you review the project requirements and plan your time accordingly.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of Spanish and Portuguese Wines

The remarkable variety and exceptional quality of German and Austrian wines may surprise you, but they will not disappoint. To get to know the wines of Germany and Austria, this course sets up a unique opportunity to dive into the contexts, varietals, and characteristics of wines from these regions.

Throughout the course, you will explore the similar wine histories, climates, and geographies of Germany and Austria and consider how they influence the grapes grown and wines produced in these regions. By identifying the varietals grown there, you will draw connections through your evolving expertise and set an exciting foundation for further education on regional wines and their individuality. You will also analyze and discover how to interpret wine labels from these countries to enable you to select wines to experiment with, discuss, and enjoy.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

One of the best ways to learn is to teach. In the case of wine, one of the best methods of learning comes through sharing.

In this course, you learn by working through the process of planning and hosting a wine-sharing event. You begin by selecting three to five wines from Germany and Austria to share. You are then guided through the process of planning the event (in person or virtually), including determining what information to share about each of the wines and how to serve them. Finally, while hosting the event, you will formulate your own opinions about the wines and learn from the experiences of others. By exploring these wines in this unique course, you will expand your palate, spark conversation, and support your lifelong study of wine.

Because of the steps required to plan and host your event, we strongly recommend you review the project requirements and plan your time accordingly.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of German and Austrian Wines

The wine industry in the Southern Hemisphere is part of the growing and dynamic "new world" wine industry. Southern Hemisphere wines include those based on the traditional international varieties as well as wines based on signature varietals you will only find in their respective countries.

In this course, you will explore the foundations of high-quality wines coming from five of the highest-volume wine-producing countries in the Southern Hemisphere: Argentina, Australia, Chile, New Zealand, and South Africa. You will start with the consideration of the climate of these areas, remembering that Vitis vinifera is best grown between the 30th and 50th parallels of both the Northern and Southern Hemispheres. You will explore the grape varieties and wine styles associated with each of our countries of focus, and you will combine all that you discover to research a specific winery and wine from each country.

The following course is required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials

The Southern Hemisphere offers myriad wines to the world, and now you have the opportunity to experience these wines and share them with others.

During this course, you will be guided through the process of planning and hosting an event sharing the wines of the Southern Hemisphere. You will start by selecting wines for others to try, then research and plan what information to share about each wine. Finally, you will host your event and lead your guests in trying each wine and sharing their opinions about the experience. Through your work in preparing and hosting this event, you will deepen your understanding of Southern Hemisphere wines, perhaps find a few favorites to enjoy regularly, and hopefully be inspired to continue exploring the wines of the Southern Hemisphere.

The following courses are required to be completed before taking this course:

  • Wine Essentials
  • Foundations of Southern Hemisphere Wines

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