top of page

Fast-track your understanding into the intricate world of French wine!

Whether wine professional, inquisitive wine enthusiast, or energetic epicurean looking to enhance your experiences through food and wine, French Wine Essentials provides students with a solid foundation on the wines of France.


WSG Essentials programs present the often-complex world of French wine in an accessible and engaging way: highlighting “need-to-know” regions, grape varieties, and wine styles.

Students explore the culture, cuisine, history, viticulture, and winemaking principles behind the most influential wine regions in the world while gaining industry-recognized certification.

Not just an introductory course, WSG Essentials courses are a launchpad to the highly respected WSG Wine Scholar® certifications, the vibrant WSG Community, and the first step towards wine mastery.

Essentials are the perfect courses to ignite a lifetime of learning and passion for wine.

Your French Wine Essentials journey begins here!


Class dates: Thursdays: July 11, 18, 25, Aug. 1, 8, 2024

Times: 6pm-8:30pm (some classes may go until 9pm depending on content)

Tuition: $595 (includes 12-15 hours of in-class instruction, all wines to be sampled in class, tutored tasting, and exam registration)

Location: Hy-Vee Liquors (right next to grocery store)

7180 10th St. N.

Oakdale, MN

Instructors: Allison Sheardy, DipWSET, MW Candidate, FWS, and Kandace Faidley, WSET3, FWS, SWS

Exam: August 8 (end of class) (50 multiple choice, 45 min., 60% is passing and a certificate will be mailed out)


Last day to register is July 1, 2024 


*You must be 21 or older to take this course; please provide date of birth. 

*Please also provide your contact information: email, mailing address, and phone number.

*We know you like giving the gift of knowledge, so please provide the above details OF THE PERSON TAKING THE COURSE if you purchase it for someone else.

*Please provide any special consideration or reasonable adjustment needs at the time of booking; please enter this in the notes section at checkout. 


Questions? Contact Nikki or Karin: or

WSG French Wine Essentials, July 11-Aug. 8, 2024

  • This program includes all the necessary support and tools to understand the regions and wine styles of France:

    Our sessions include 12-15 hours of classroom instruction along with tutored wine tasting. Your tuition includes:

    • A detailed and comprehensive 101-page course book rich with photographs, detailed and up-to-date maps, illustrations, and infographics to optimize learning. The book is provided in print + e-book formats
    • One-year access to WSG’s e-learning platform including online support modules and interactive activities related to your course
    • Registration for the exam
    • WSG Essentials certificate upon passing the exam

    How much study time is required?

    This certification has a minimum requirement of 25 hours of study time, including 12-15 hours of in-person classroom instruction.

    In addition to classroom instruction, we recommend that you engage in an additional 10-13 hours of study before sitting the exam.

    The number of total hours you spend will vary greatly based on your existing wine knowledge.

    You are encouraged to expand your studying techniques beyond that of simply re-reading the course book. To assimilate knowledge and facilitate deeper understanding of key concepts try to engage in active learning techniques, such as notetaking, completing the e-learning activities, explaining key concepts to others and, of course, wine tasting!

    Who is the French Wine Essentials program for?

    • Hospitality, wholesale, and/or retail wine professionals looking to enhance their knowledge of French wine
    • Aspiring wine professionals looking to start, transition to, or advance their career in wine
    • Inquisitive wine enthusiasts wanting to become more familiar with French wine
    • Enthusiastic home or professional chefs, energetic epicureans, or “foodies”
    • Avid travelers
    • Anyone wishing to become more knowledgeable about France and its wine and food culture

    Why Choose WSG Essentials?

    This course enables students to:

    • Acquire fundamental wine knowledge in just weeks
    • Learn about the most important “need-to-know” wines of France and how they relate to local landmarks, culture, and cuisine
    • Recall the essential grape varieties and major wine regions of France 
    • Navigate seemingly complicated French wine classification systems
    • Be perfectly poised to continue your studies with the prestigious French Wine Scholar® (FWS) certification program


  • To maximize learning each need-to-know wine is organized by:

    Place of Origin

    Grape Varieties

    Wine Profile

    Production Notes

    Notable Producers

    The FWE curriculum is further enriched by update-to-date maps, regional landmarks, topics of interest, and local signature cuisine.

    Are there any prerequisites?

    No. WSG Essentials Wine Programs require no prior wine knowledge, only a willingness to learn and expand your horizons through study. The program provides all the tools required to fully grasp the essentials of French, Italian, or Spanish wine.

    What does the program cover?

    France is home to almost 400 wine appellations. FWE introduces you to the most important regions and styles of wine found across the country. Place of origin, grape varieties, wine profile, production, and pairing notes are all explored alongside notable producers and local signature cuisine. Appendices covering vine training systems, wine production methods, tasting descriptors, and recommended wine lists enhance your working knowledge. Each wine is presented within a regional and cultural context while landmarks and traditional cuisine are highlighted to complete the curriculum.

    Key Learning Objectives:

    Learning Objective 1: Understand the key environmental factors (including geography, topography, climate, and soils) and viticultural practices and how they impact the style and quality of each “need-to-know” wine.

    Learning Objective 2: Understand the key vinification and winemaking practices that impact the style and quality of each “need-to-know” wine.

    Learning Objective 3: Know the grape varieties, styles, and quality levels of wines produced within the designated appellations.

    Learning Objective 4: Understand the basic tenets of French wine law and recall labeling terms.

    Assessment Criteria:

    By the end of the course students will be able to:

    Describe the key factors that influence the growing environment and climate of each appellation

    Recall the main grape varieties (and their characteristics) associated with each wine covered in the session

    Identify the location of the profiled appellations on a map of France

    Recall viticultural, vinification, and aging techniques that contribute to the style and quality of the wines

    Describe the meaning of key labeling terms

    Recall and describe the style of each of the wines covered in the session

    What’s Included:


    Shipped to your address, the beautifully designed coursebook, rich with photographs, detailed maps, illustrations, and infographics contains all the information you need to know.

    Online Study Modules:

    1-year access to interactive e-learning activities designed to enrich the study manual and support different learning styles.

    Expert Instruction:

    Learn from the WSG Approved Program Providers and certified educators.

    Student Community:

    Network with the other students taking the FWE course, form a tasting group, and build your wine network.

    Final Exam:

    The exam is comprised of 50 multiple-choice questions. Students have 45 minutes to complete the exam. Passing score is 60%. There is no wine tasting component on the exam.

    Students will take the written exam at the program provider’s location on the specified date.


    Upon receiving a passing score, you will receive your well-deserved FWE certificate, acknowledging you have gained proficiency in the wines of France. Add this reputed certification to your LinkedIn profile and résumé or CV.

    About Wine Scholar Guild:

    Founded in 2005, Wine Scholar Guild is the only wine education provider to focus solely on the wine regions of France, Italy, and Spain, instilling a deep understanding of these wines, winemakers, and their culture.

    Wine Scholar Guild offers immersive, region-specific wine education through online, in-person, and study abroad certification programs. WSG certifications set the industry standard for up-to-date and in-depth information on the most influential wine regions of the world through three distinct levels of study: Essentials, Scholar, and Masters.

    In addition to certification programs, WSG membership provides live online events and hundreds of hours of recorded content produced by the world’s leading authorities in wine.

bottom of page