Education & Training for the Distilled Spirits Industry Members

DISCUS Education & Training

As our industry continues to grow and evolve, education is an important part of understanding our heritage, celebrating the present and considering our opportunities for the future. DISCUS recognizes the importance of education and offers courses for both industry insiders and the larger public through our education partners. DISCUS also hosts monthly webinars for those looking to expand their knowledge of the industry and current events. DISCUS members also have access to our past webinars and various resources on our member portal. For more information about education programs and resources, please contact [email protected].

Education Partners

Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET)

DISCUS is pleased to be partnering with WSET as an approved program provider of the WSET Level 1 and Level 2 Award in Spirits course.  For our cancellation policy and other DISCUS policies related to WSET, please click here.

WSET provides world class education and qualifications to inspire and empower spirits professionals. They offer a comprehensive suite of qualifications covering wines, spirits and sake. WSET courses are globally recognized as the international standard in wine and spirit knowledge and designed for those who are just starting out in their careers, as well as established professionals.

LEVEL 1 AWARD IN SPIRITS

OVERVIEW

Number of weeks: 4

Number of modules: 5

Total course hours: 6

Hard Copy Study Materials Needed?:  No

COURSE STRUCTURE

Module 1: Introducing Spirits

  • Learn to taste and describe spirits using the WSET Systematic Approach to Tasting.
  • Discover how spirits are made and the influence of production methods on the style of spirit produced.

Module 2: Fruit and Sugar Cane Spirits

  • Learn about the raw materials and production processes used to produce the principal types of fruit and sugar cane spirits.
  • Learn about the key characteristics and labelling terms used for these styles of spirits.

Module 3: Whisk (e)y, Tequila and Mezcal

  • Learn about the raw materials and production processes used to produce the principal types of whiskies, tequila and mezcal.
  • Learn about the key characteristics and labelling terms used for these styles of spirits.

Module 4: Vodka; Flavoured Spirits; Liqueurs and Aromatised Wines

  • Learn about the raw materials and production processes used to produce the principal types of vodka, flavoured spirits, liqueurs and aromatised wines.
  • Learn about the key labelling terms used for these styles of spirits.

Module 5: Bar Essentials and Cocktails

  • Learn about the common equipment and glassware used in the service of spirits and cocktails.
  • Learn about the key ingredients and the factors to be considered when
    making a balanced cocktail. Learn about the key cocktail families and know notable examples from each.

Module 6: Revision and Resources

  • Mock multiple choice feedback examination which can be attempted as
    many times as the student likes.

This foundational course is ideal for anyone who wishes to obtain a sound introduction to spirits. No previous spirits knowledge is required – ideal for those starting a career in the industry or pursuing a general interest in spirits. This qualification offers a hands-on introduction to the world of spirits. You’ll explore the main styles and types of spirits through sight, smell, and taste to develop an understanding of the key factors affecting flavors and aromas. The four-week, self-paced, online course culminates with an exam. Upon successful completion, you will receive a WSET certificate and lapel pin.

LEVEL 2 AWARD IN SPIRITS

OVERVIEW

Number of weeks: 5

Number of modules: 6

Total course hours: 30

Hard Copy Study Materials Needed?: Yes

COURSE STRUCTURE

Module 1: Spirits Production

  • List and state the purpose of the four key steps used in spirits production.

Module 2: Brandy & Vodka

  • State the raw materials used to produce brandy and vodka.
  • State the key flavour characteristics of these two spirits.
  • Identify the key production processes that can have a defining influence on the characteristics of brandy and vodka.
  • State the meaning of the key labelling terms for brandy. Identify the two types of still, state how they are used and the style of spirit they can produce.
  • An introduction to tasting spirits using language from the WSET Systematic Approach to Tasting (SAT).

Module 3: Rum, Tequila and Whisk(e)y

  • State the raw materials used to produce Rum, Tequila, and Whisk(e)y.
  • State the key flavour characteristics of these three spirits.
  • Identify the key production processes that can have a defining influence on the characteristics of Rum, Tequila, and Whisk(e)y.
  • State the different styles of Rum and the labelling terms for Tequila and Whisk(e)y.

Module 4: Flavoured Spirits, Storage & Service of Spirits

  • Describe the different techniques to add flavour to spirits.
  • State the principal types of flavoured spirits.
  • Describe the correct procedures for the storage of spirits. Name the important ingredients used to make cocktails.
  • Identify the common equipment and glassware used in the service of spirits.
  • State the four factors to consider when making a balanced cocktail.

Module 5: Revision & Resources

  • Mock multiple-choice feedback examination which can be attempted as
    many times as the student likes.

For individuals wishing to develop their expertise in spirits and liqueurs, the WSET Level 2 Award in Spirits course will cover the fundamental production methods and principal raw materials discovering how they are used to make the key spirit styles. You’ll also explore the key practices and principles of serving spirits and the use of spirits in cocktails. The six-week, self-paced, online course culminates with an exam. Upon successful completion you will receive a WSET certificate and lapel pin and will be able to use the associated WSET certified logo.

Current WSET Course Offerings, Details, and Registration

Level 1 Course Offerings

Level 1 Award in Spirits (February 22 - March 21)

Learn more about course details here.

Course Dates: February 22, 2021 –  March 21, 2021

Online Test: April 7, 2021 @ 4pm ET

Cost: $325

REGISTER HERE!

Registration deadline: February 8, 2021

 

Level 1 Award in Spirits (June 28 - July 25)

Learn more about course details here.

Course Dates: June 28, 2021 –  July 25, 2021

Online Test: August 11, 2021 @ 4pm ET

Cost: $325

REGISTER HERE!

Registration deadline: June 14, 2021

 

Level 2 Course Offerings

Level 2 Award in Spirits (January 11 - February 14)

Learn more about course details here.

Course Dates: January 11, 2021 –  February 14, 2021

Online Test: March 3, 2021 @ 4pm ET

Cost: $575

REGISTER HERE!

Registration deadline: December 21, 2020

Level 2 Award in Spirits (March 15 - April 18)

Learn more about course details here.

Course Dates: March 15, 2021 –  April 18, 2021

Online Test: May 5, 2021 @ 4pm ET

Cost: $575

REGISTER HERE!

Registration deadline: March 1, 2021

Level 2 Award in Spirits (May 10 - June 3)

Learn more about course details here.

Course Dates: May 10, 2021 – June 3, 2021

Online Test: June 30, 2021 @ 4pm ET

Cost: $575

REGISTER HERE!

Registration deadline: April 26, 2021

Webinar Series

Webinars are free for DISCUS members; $50 for non-members

Check back soon for more details on upcoming events! 

For information about upcoming courses or webinars provided by DISCUS, please email [email protected]