Course Profile: VEN 111 – Wines of the World

VEN 111

Each Spring Quarter, either Dr. Hildegarde Heymann or Dr. Sue Ebeler teach VEN 111 and VEN 111L, essentially Grapes and Wines of the World. This course, which includes wine tasting, is a survey of some of the world’s wine-producing regions and their respective wine styles.  

The course, which meets once a week for three hours, uses the tasting of wines as a vehicle to allow students to be able to identify various wine regions in the world, know which varietals and wine styles come from which areas, and compare and contrast varietals, wines, and wine styles across areas. Upon completion of the tasting portion of the course, students should be able to: describe flavors of various wine styles and grape varietals from selected areas, create a systematic approach to wine tasting, and effectively communicate their impressions of wines in written and oral formats. Students are expected to spit the wines after tasting them.  

To successfully complete the course, students are required to write two descriptive reviews each week of two wines tasted that week, a 4–6-page research paper about their favorite wine or wine that they have tried or aspire to try one day and give a 4-minute oral presentation on their research paper. Students are also expected to participate in discussions during lectures and wine tastings.