AWE Member

Ian Symonds

BEd(Hons) DipWSET
Tel: 01692 405534 | Mob:07453 707677

My interest in wine began in the 1970’s when a neighbor was studying for wine exams with the newly formed Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET). Some years later, in 1999 and living in Hong Kong, I joined a WSET Level 2 course, my studies continued with WSET through to attaining the Diploma in 2003, thirty years after my neighbor! I am a teacher with thirteen years experience in UK schools, then into commerce, including training, for sixteen years. I have a Certificate of Education from Birmingham University; a Bachelor of Education (Honours) from Sussex University and many short courses that provided the basis for these two careers spanning twenty-nine years. I began teaching wine classes in Hong Kong as soon as I had passed the WSET Level 3 in 2000. When WSET created their Certified Educator scheme in 2002 I registered. I now have eighteen years experience in wine education and taught wine classes almost every day in one or more of the following before moving to the UK:

• HKU Space (Hong Kong University School of Professional & Continuing Education)
• Hong Kong University
• Macau IFT (Institute for Tourism Studies)
• Hong Kong PolyTechnic University School of Hotel & Tourism Management (Food and Wine Academy)
• Hong Kong Management Association

I have also taught for the Open University of Hong Kong and a number of other local wine schools. I am a jury member for the Hong Kong “Everyday Bordeaux” selection held by CIVB/SOPEXA and judge local events for the HKWJA. I have been to wine producing regions around the world including specialized tutor visits to Bourgogne, Bordeaux, Australia, Chile and Japan for an intensive Sake course; and hold the:

• WSET Diploma
• WSET Certified Educator (and Educator of potential new WSET teachers for the last five years)
• WSET Certified Sake Educator
• Official Bourgogne Wine Instructor
• International Bordeaux Wine Educator
• Wines of Portugal Academy Level III Advanced Ambassador
• Sherry Educator for the Consejos Reguladores del Marco de Jerez
• New Zealand Wine Professional Level 2
• Court of Master Sommelier ‘Certified Sommelier’ (CS)
• Certified Specialist of Wine (CSW)
• Certified Specialist of Spirits (CSS)
• AWRI Advanced Wine Assessment Course graduate

In addition to teaching I also attend major wine and wine related shows in Hong Kong speaking in a number of master-classes and write regularly for a number of wine publications, both in print and on the Internet.
Membership of various professional wine bodies including:

Association of Wine Educators (UK);
Court of Master Sommeliers – Certified Sommelier – CS
Guild of Sommeliers
Society of Wine Educators (US) – CSW and CSS;
Circle of Wine Writers (UK);
Wine Writers Circle (HK);
Hong Kong Wine Society
Knights of Alba (Hong Kong)
Wine Century Club (Hong Kong)
Ordre des Coteaux de Champagne
Hong Kong Wine Judges Association
Hong Kong Wine Merchants’ Chamber of Commerce

Once settled in the UK City College Norwich Hotel School contacted me and we are offering some tastings and WSET Levels 2 and 3.

Available for

Club/Society tastings, Private tastings, WSET courses, Wine courses, Trade/Sommelier training, Public/trade wine shows, Food and wine matching

Other wine work

Sake education


Bourgogne, Bordeaux, Australia, Chile, New Zealand, Sherry, Sake, Wine Faults


WSET Diploma, WSET Certified Educator, WSET Certified Sake Educator, AWRI Advance Wine Assessment Course graduate, Bourgogne L’Ecole du Vin Educator, Bordeaux L’École du Vin Educator, Sherry Educator, New Zealand Wine Educator, Wines of Portugal Educator, Vintage Port Academy graduate, Court of Master Sommeliers Certified Sommelier, Certified Sake Sommelier

Ask Ian Symonds about your event