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WSET Announces Educator of the Year Award Nominees

21/12/2016
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The Wine & Spirit Education Trust has announced the nominees for its annual Educator of the Year Award sponsored by Riedel.

An elite selection of WSET Approved Programme Providers (APPs) and individual WSET Certified Educators from across the UK and internationally have been hand-picked by WSET to be shortlisted for the award.

The winner will be decided by a panel of judges led by Ian Harris, WSET CEO, including Richard Bampfield MW, Laura Jewell MW of Wine Australia and Matt Knight of Riedel UK. The judges will be looking for the educator that has demonstrated clear dedication and growth in delivering WSET’s courses as well as innovation in wine and spirits education.

The winner will be announced at the annual WSET Awards and Graduation on 23 January 2017.

WSET is experiencing phenomenal growth and it is our Approved Programme Providers and dedicated educators across the world that allow us to meet the demand for wine and spirits qualifications. Whilst we highly appreciate the work of all our educators, the selected nominees have truly gone above and beyond and we look forward to celebrating the winner at our Awards and Graduation in January.

Ian Harris, CEO of WSET

 

UK NOMINEES

Berkmann Wine Cellars

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits
Berkmann has seen a continual increase in WSET candidate numbers for the past four years. They also introduced their own Veraison training programme last year aimed specifically at the needs of hospitality clients and the importance of service skills backed by product knowledge.

Hallgarten Druitt Novum Wines

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits
Hallgarten has two full time educators overseen by Beverly Tabbron MW and, as a business, strongly encourages employees to sit WSET courses. Its trade connections have enabled it to offer WSET qualifications wider within the hospitality sector.

Liberty Wines

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Spirits, Level 2 Award in Wines & Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits
Liberty Wines has a significant number of WSET Certified Educators in-house and the majority of Liberty staff holds a WSET qualification. Liberty Wine Academy offers different modules in tasting, service, sales, wine list navigation, and food and wine pairing in addition to WSET.

 

INTERNATIONAL NOMINEES

Hakkasan Group (UK, USA, Middle East)

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 1 Award in Spirits, Level 1 Award in Sake, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 2 Award in Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 3 Award in Sake
Hakkasan has a comprehensive staff training programme across its group, which includes value-adding activities such as vineyard visits alongside WSET exams. Each restaurant has at least one WSET Certified Educator and the group saw strong growth in candidates over the last academic year.

Dragon Phoenix (China)*

WSET qualifications offered: Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 4 Diploma in Wines and Spirits
Co-founded by mainland China’s first MW Fongyee Walker, Dragon Phoenix has a strong profile as a centre for wine education in China with a comprehensive offering of WSET qualifications including the highest accolade, the Level 4 Diploma in Wines and Spirits.

L’Academie du Vin de Paris (France)

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits
When L’Academie du Vin first started offering WSET courses in Paris, it was one of only two APPs in the city. Despite growing competition as more APPs open, it has managed to grow its student numbers phenomenally.

Elisa Errea from The Wine Studio (Spain) - Individual Educator Nomination

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits
Elisa is the lead WSET Certified Educator at The Wine Studio alongside four other educators. She is a strong advocate of WSET and has developed relationships with organisations not just in Madrid but around Spain, allowing WSET access to students in Rioja, Valladolid and Seville.

Napa Wine Academy (USA)

WSET qualifications offered: Level 1 Award in Wines, Level 2 Award in Wines and Spirits, Level 2 Award in Spirits, Level 3 Award in Wines and Spirits , Level 3 Award in Sake
WSET Certified Educator Christian Oggenfuss has expanded beyond California and now offers courses across the States with an impressive line-up of educators. Their client list includes major distributors, national retailers and hospitality businesses, and they have an online presence beyond their website including an online learning academy, blog, and strong social media profile.

The full list of WSET awards and scholarships for 2016/17 is available here

 

*Please note: At the nominees request this nomination has been amended from a Individual Educator Nomination to a nomination for the course provider.