Italian Wine Maestro Certification Course (pilot)

Course Description

The Italian Wine Maestro Program is an intermediate-level course dedicated to the world of Italian wine and its native grapes. The course is aimed at wine professionals with some background in wine and viticulture, but without any previous specific training in Italian wine. It is also open to wine enthusiasts with an interest in Italian wine culture and its rich grape biodiversity. The course follows a grape by grape approach to understanding Italian wine.

Where and When:

The pilot version of the course will run in Vancouver, BC in a venue located at 843 E Hastings Street. It will start on Wednesday, October 25th, 2017 with classes running from 6pm to 9pm every Wednesday. The exam will take place on Wednesday December 20th it.

Course Structure:

The course comprises 24 hours of classroom teaching and wine-tasting divided into 8 three-hour sessions held on a weekly basis.


At the end of the course students will sit a final exam consisting of a test with 50 multiple choice questions and a blind tasting of two wines.

Reading Material:

The core text of the Italian Wine Maestro course is Italian Wine Unplugged Grape by Grape (by Stevie Kim et al., Positive Press, 2017) available in ebook format on Amazon. Sections of the ebook have been designed for the Italian Wine Maestro and will therefore be a required reading for the exam. Additional reading include chapters from Ian D’Agata’s Native Wine Grapes of Italy (Univ. of California Press, 2017).

Instructor for the Pilot course in Vancouver:

Michaela Morris

Michaela Morris is a wine writer, educator, judge and speaker based in Vancouver, Canada. She closely collaborated in the development of the program and is also one of the contributors of Italian Wine Unplugged Grape by Grape. She has worked in all aspects of the wine industry, from fine dining restaurants to private wine stores and importation. In the latter role, she was the Marketing/Logistics Manager for Liquid Art Fine Wines, a premium-only wine importing company focused on Italian wine. She worked with the company for over four years helping to take it from a Western Canadian company to a National enterprise. She founded and co-owned house wine (2003-2015), a consulting company which offered private and public wine tastings as well as cellar management for private collectors. Currently she is the weekly wine columnist for the Westender newspaper, contributes to Taste, Quench, Meininger’s International Wine Business and Decanter and makes regular radio and television appearances. In Canada, Michaela judges wine competitions and presents seminars for festivals such as Cornucopia, Vancouver International Wine Festival and Northernlands. She also lends her expertise abroad judging for the Wines of Portugal Challenge and Vinitaly’s 5 Star Wines Award, speaking at conferences such as Wine2Wine in Verona and Barolo’s Collisioni Festival and sits on Collisioni's Wine Educational Board (W.E.B.). Michaela successfully completed the Wine & Spirit Education Trust’s (WSET) Diploma in 2006 and is an instructor for program in Vancouver, lecturing on Italy, Alsace and the local market. She is also one of only seven Vinitaly International Academy (VIA) Certified Italian Wine Experts to date and is now pursuing her Master of Wine studies.


Expressions of interest and enquires about the Italian Wine Maestro program can be addressed at