Yaba Haba! Wine and Whisky Making Certification
There are several very good, very well respected enology certificates issued by accredited colleges or universities for online students.
In my area, there are three or four ads (every day) in the jobs wanted section of the newspaper, looking for people who have these enologist certifications.
California still produces about 90% of all wine in the United States and Gallo produces about one quarter of that - so if you are thinking about a career in wine - and you don't have the three million to start your own winery - you'll probably end up in California and chances are good you'll end up at Gallo. Just so you know, ok.
New York, Washington and Oregon are the other producers and they share the rest of the market. About 3% each.
So far we've discussed wine, but there are other ways to brew up the little yeasties as we all know - small breweries are almost desperate for people who have been trained and know what they are doing. Small breweries are popping up like zits on my teenage brothers fuzz-covered face!
According to the great and wonderful wikipedia the big small brewery states are Oregon, Vermont, Maine and Montana. This just makes so much sense. In Canada, Quebec is the small brewery capital. I don't understand this so much, but maybe it's the cold. And maybe it's some kind of French underground movement.
Whatever the case. Hooray!
The Courses, Colleges and UniversitiesVESTA or Viticulture and Enology Science and Technology Alliance has partnered with colleges in Arkansas, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Texas and
Wisconsin to deliver online courses. It is funded by the National Science Foundation.
WSU Viticulture and Enology Certificate Programs are 1.5 year professional certificate programs.
These programs fill up fast and have a wait list. It's never too early to apply. The programs begin in February and include a 3 week boot camp in Washington state. The rest is delivered online. I highly recommend these certificates. Most of the graduates go on to start their own vineyard or winery. Part of the course is writing a business plan for a winery. Previous college chemistry and biology courses are strongly recommended.
Des Moines Area Community College has an online Enology and Viticulture certificate program. 75% of the program is online. The lab portion is given in an intensive 3 day residential school at the DMACC Ankeny Campus, usually Thursday - Saturday so that only 2 days of work (Thursday and Friday) need to be taken off for those who work full time. The 3 day residential lab is mandatory.
Moray College University of the Highlands and Islands in Elgin, Scotland gives an online Whisky making course. The cost is £195.00 (GBP) and uncovers the Origins of Scotch Whisky, the making, cask and maturation, labelling, legislation, customs, regional variations, marketing and wait for it...
nosing and tasting. Six single malt whiskies are sent for your 20 hours of full time study. Assessment is done from home and must include nosing and tasting notes. The course can be started at any time. Brilliant for anyone who has ever tried to brew home made... well, home made moonshine is what we call it here. Usually horrible stuff. But what if you could learn from the masters?
Certificate Program in Winemaking for Online Learners is a partnership between the Department of Viticulture and Enology at UC Davis and UC Davis Extension. You have to apply and be accepted to enter the program. One semester of college level chemistry is required for entrance. There is an 8-10 month waiting list. (sigh. ) Courses are limited to 40 students and offered multiple times per year.