Sommelier Program to Commence in London

The London edition of the acclaimed six-day olive oil sommelier course will begin this weekend in Bloomsbury.

By Olive Oil Times Staff
Jan. 17, 2019 08:32 UTC

The Olive Oil Sommelier Certification Program jointly pro­duced by the Olive Oil Times Education Lab and the International Culinary Center is set to begin in London this week­end.

It is the first time the course, which has trained hun­dreds of indus­try pro­fes­sion­als, chefs and enthu­si­asts in olive oil qual­ity assess­ment since it began in 2016, will ven­ture beyond its annual New York and California ses­sions.

Curtis Cord, the exec­u­tive direc­tor of the pro­gram and the pub­lisher of Olive Oil Times, said the atten­dees of the sold-out London course come from all cor­ners of the world.

The six-day course, which will be held in the Bloomsbury dis­trict of cen­tral London January 20 – 25, is designed to empower and inspire a new gen­er­a­tion of olive oil experts and edu­ca­tors. The fast-paced, inter­ac­tive cur­ricu­lum accel­er­ates the process of learn­ing, pack­ing into six days a foun­da­tion of knowl­edge that might oth­er­wise take years to mas­ter.

Graduates of the pro­gram have included olive oil pro­duc­ers; importers, dis­trib­u­tors and retail­ers; chefs, restau­ra­teurs and food­ser­vice pro­fes­sion­als; health pro­fes­sion­als, jour­nal­ists and entre­pre­neurs; and those who just want to deeply under­stand one of the world’s health­i­est foods.

Program top­ics span olive oil qual­ity assess­ment, cul­ti­va­tion and his­tory, har­vest­ing and pro­duc­tion, health ben­e­fits, chem­istry, regions and cul­ti­vars, stan­dards and grades, culi­nary appli­ca­tions and con­sumer edu­ca­tion.

More than 100 olive oils from 20 coun­tries will be ana­lyzed in guided tast­ings to expose par­tic­i­pants to an unequaled vari­ety of regions, cul­ti­vars, pro­duc­tion tech­niques and unique sen­sory char­ac­ter­is­tics.

Those who suc­cess­fully com­plete the course receive a joint Olive Oil Sommelier cer­ti­fi­ca­tion from the International Culinary Center and the Olive Oil Times Education Lab and join a grow­ing com­mu­nity of olive oil sen­sory ana­lysts and edu­ca­tors.

The next course will be held in New York imme­di­ately fol­low­ing the NYIOOC World Olive Oil Competition.

Past par­tic­i­pants of the pro­gram have said it was an edu­ca­tional expe­ri­ence that empow­ered them to take on a range of far-reach­ing ini­tia­tives.

The qual­ity and range of instruc­tion were at a level that far sur­passed my expec­ta­tions,” said Jacqueline Tyburski, who suc­cess­fully com­pleted the course in New York. The pro­gram was very bal­anced and in depth, with a real empha­sis on train­ing a new com­mu­nity of empow­ered, knowl­edge­able, and pas­sion­ate olive oil experts,”

I will apply what I have learned by going back to our pro­duc­tion pipeline from cul­ti­va­tion all the way to bot­tling,” said an olive oil pro­ducer from Sparta, Greece, Demosthenis Chronis. We can fine-tune some things so we get a bet­ter qual­ity olive oil and, hope­fully, an award-win­ning extra vir­gin olive oil.”

Fabulous course with incred­i­ble amounts of infor­ma­tion that will be used as a ref­er­ence guide for years to come,” a pro­ducer from Turkey said of the New York pro­gram.

I highly rec­om­mend it. Every day was absolutely worth it,” a gro­cery exec­u­tive, Elise LaGamba said.

The qual­ity and range of instruc­tion were at a level that far sur­passed my expec­ta­tions,” said Willem Voorvaart, an investor from the Netherlands.

For more infor­ma­tion or to enroll in the New York course, visit the Olive Oil Times Education Lab web­site.


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