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The Best Gift Wine Lovers Can Receive

There’s no shortage of wine chotchkies one can give as a gift during the holidays. Chances are the wine lover(s) in your life already has a cornucopia of bottle openers, decanters, wine glass charms or ceramic butler statue/bottle holder.

But what’s the one thing every wine lover could use more of (besides more wine)? The answer is knowledge. There’s so much to learn about wine—one could spend an entire lifetime learning about wine and never learn it all, even though some snooty know-it-all types might disagree. We thirst to learn more (see what I did there? ‘thirst’ for knowledge…get it? Sorry, I’m a dork).

I recently took a few wine intensive courses at the Culinary Institute of America in Napa valley and remember sitting in class thinking how unique the experience was, and how it would make a great gift.

Think about it—learning about the most exciting wine regions in the world from Master Sommeliers while tasting 25-40 exceptional wines at the most prestigious culinary school in America. The wines they pour are worth the price of admission alone, but the knowledge students leave with will last a lifetime.

In the Burgundy intensive, we tasted a full range of red and white Burgundies from low tier villages wine all the way up to 10-year old grand crus. It was awesome. On top of the classes, lunch is served in the Hogwarts-looking student kitchen.

As if all the wine, knowledge, food and conversation in class wasn’t enough, the setting in Napa is incredible. Where else can you do all this while looking out over vineyards in Napa Valley?

The price of these intensives are about what you’d pay for a 3-day seminar or trade show, and I think they’re tax deductible. The next round of wine intensives are coming up in the spring so now’s the time to start planning for a trip to Napa.

Course schedule here: http://www.ciaprochef.com/winestudies/index.html

If you want to make the wine lover in your life happy and want to give the gift of knowledge contact:

Crystal McAuley
707-967-2568
c_mcaule@culinary.edu

In my opinion, learning is a lifelong pursuit that provides a feeling of growing and feeling fulfilled. Hopefully I’ll see you in some of these classes in the spring. Cheers!

White Burgundy day was a favorite!
Master Sommelier Keith Goldston teaching Bordeaux
Master Sommelier Tim Gaiser teaching Italy
Just a few Burgs we tasted before 10am
A lineup of Italian wines including Amarone
the lunch menu
Italian intensive day 3

  1 comment for “The Best Gift Wine Lovers Can Receive

  1. Carolyn Calonje
    November 26, 2012 at 9:11 PM

    Thank you sharing this experience!

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