Certificate in Professional Wine Knowledge (Sommelier)



The New Zealand School of Food & Wine is the only WSET® authorised provider in New Zealand offering a 12 week classroom based teaching programme. 

This intensive programme offers the hospitality professional or the wine enthusiast an international qualification that provides a thorough understanding of the principle wines and spirits of the world and key factors influencing style, quality and value.

Each week you will learn about international wines from all major wine producing countries such as France, Spain, Italy, Chile and Australia through tastings and self-directed study. You will study the principles underlying food and wine matching as well as learn how Microsoft Excel can be used to present and cost wine lists and manage inventory control. There will be visits to well-known local vineyards where you will learn about viticulture and wine making practices from highly respected wine makers. The programme includes practical hospitality workshops and a real workplace experience to test your wine knowledge and service skills.


French Wine Scholar Certification

As part of this programme students will complete the French Wine Scholar programme to enhance their understanding of French wine regions. This is imbedded in the 12 week programme and the fees are included as part of your full course fees.

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To ensure you receive all of the training required to operate within the hospitality industry you will also receive your Food Safety and Licence Controller qualifications.


Graduates can return to NZSFW to join the Certificate in Cookery and NZ Certificate in Hospitality Level 5.


You will be able to work as a wine and spirit professional in all fields of the hospitality, service and wine industries. This may be in your own business, or in wine retail outlets, wineries, wine companies, resorts, lodges, cruise liners, luxury yachts, restaurants or cafés - there are many opportunities to explore once you graduate.


All graduates have access to the NZSFW Internship Placement Service and internships. 


WSET® is the qualification awarding division of the London Wine & Spirit Education Trust and accredited by the British qualifications authority. These qualifications are essential for students wishing to study for the Masters of Wine. You will earn four WSET® Awards in this programme.


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Course Requirements

  • Aged 18 or over
  • Attend an interview in person or by telephone
  • IELTS 6 or equivalent for international students*
  • Valid visitor visa for international students

* English language pathways available.

What Qualifications will I Gain?

  • NZSFW Certificate in Wine
  • NZSFW Certificate in Professional Wine Knowledge, Sommelier
  • WSET® Level 1 Award in Wines
  • WSET® Level 2 Award in Wines & Spirits
  • WSET® Level 2 Award in Spirits
  • WSET® Level 3 Award in Wine
  • French Wine Scholar (optional)
  • Food Safety Unit Standards
  • Licence Controller Qualification (LCQ) Unit Standards



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