Classes to Learn About Wine & Beer
Learning with Total Wine & More
Total Wine & More's wine and beer education courses are a fun and relaxed way to learn about the products in our store. Every month, our trained staff will help lead you through selections specially chosen to help you identify the similarities and differences between them. Held in our store's specially designed Education Centers, these classes will have you tasting like the experts do. Every class includes tasting sheets, educational materials and special product discounts (where allowed by law).
Learn About Wine Class Descriptions
$20 per Wine Class
8 Wine Selections
- Wine 101 – Back to Basics
- This seminar is ideal for learning the fundamentals of wine tasting. Attendees will learn how to identify the key components of a wine, how to score a wine like the experts and proper serving temperatures. They will also explore how to select favorite wine styles and how to pair wine with appropriate foods. Eight delicious wines will be featured.
- Cruising California – Beyond the Napa Valley
- This very popular class will feature premier wines from California’s most famous wine regions beyond the Napa Valley. Sit back and learn about an array of white and red wines from the Sonoma region, Amador and the wonderful wine growing areas of the Central Coast, including Santa Barbara and Paso Robles. Eight wines will be featured.
- Local Flavor Wine Experience – Walla Walla, Willamette and Beyond
- This educational experience will cover the elegant white and red wines produced locally in the Pacific Northwest. We’ll present the best of Washington wine country, including top-notch Merlot, Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon from famed appellations such as Walla Walla and Red Mountain. The seminar will also feature Oregon examples of Pinot Gris and Pinot Noir produced within the famed Willamette Valley. Eight wines will be featured.
- Wander in Wine – Discovering Spain and Portugal
- Spanish wine is one of the hottest trends in the wine world, offering high quality at surprisingly low prices. Portuguese wines are often regarded as Europe’s best-kept secret. Rich in wine history and culture, this seminar will cover a wide variety of wine styles, from vibrant whites to elegant reds. Learn about notable wine regions such as Ribera del Duero and the Douro.
- Bordeaux Battle – Right Bank vs. Left Bank
- Join us for a head-to-head challenge as we explore Bordeaux, the most famous wine-growing region in the world. After tasting the famous Left Bank reds produced primarily with Cabernet Sauvignon and the elegant Merlot-based reds of the Right Bank, attendees will declare the winner. They will also enjoy some crisp and elegant white wines of Bordeaux, produced primarily with Sauvignon Blanc.
- Spain – Discover Vibrant Rioja
- This is the perfect class for red-wine enthusiasts. Rioja is Spain’s most recognizable and popular winegrowing area, known for delicious and elegant Tempranillo-based reds. This seated class will delve into the different winemaking styles within this famous region and examine the multiple levels of aging requirements within Rioja. Eight wines will be featured.
- Italy – Savor the Tuscan Flavor
- Join us as we explore one of the most romantic and famous wine regions in the world. Eight wines, with an emphasis on reds, will be featured during this tour of Tuscany. From Chianti to Brunello di Montalcino to Vino Nobile di Montepulciano, discover why people fall in love with the endless rolling hills and delicious wines of the region.
- A Blind Wine Tasting – Secret Grape Challenge
- Back by popular demand, this fun and thought-provoking class will offer attendees the opportunity to blind-taste eight delicious wines. Learn how to develop tasting skills as you identify unlabeled wines by qualities such as color, acidity and aromas. Wines will be paired off and tasted blind for all to compare. Each pair will be crafted from identical grape varieties grown in different parts of the world. Which wine will be declared the winner? Only you can decide.
- South American Wines – Discover the Wines of Chile, Argentina and Uruguay
- This fun and educational seminar will whisk you away to some very special wine-growing areas in South America. Learn why Malbec has taken the world by storm and explore the vibrant white and red wines of Chile and Uruguay. Discover some new and celebrated appellations. See why the world is now looking to South American winemakers for more than just great value!
- California – Napa Valley Wine Rocks!
- Napa Valley offers vastly diverse microclimates and soils as it stretches 30 miles between Napa and Calistoga. Discover dazzling white and red wines from the valley floor and the famous Cabernet Sauvignon that thrives in the mountains. Napa Valley accounts for only 5 percent of all of the wine grown in California, but the region’s quality and reputation drives crowds of tourists to the wineries along Highway 29. Join us to experience just what makes these vineyards so special. Just like Napa Valley wine, this class sells out quickly, so sign up early.
- Washington Wine Country – Local Favorites
- Winemakers from all over the world are setting up shop in Washington, where they can create unique wines with a sense of place. We’ll have local winemakers in the store for this educational experience, so our attendees will learn right from the source. Featured items will include top-notch Merlot, Riesling and Cabernet Sauvignon from famed appellations such as Walla Walla and Red Mountain. Winery guests are still being finalized. Check with your local store for details.
- A Journey Across France – Adventures Along the Wine Route
- From the food-friendly wine of Alsace, to the marvelous wine crafted in the Loire Valley, to the elegant Chardonnay and Pinot Noir of Burgundy, we’ll explore wines from some of the most famous regions in France. Discover why Chateauneuf-du-Pape is the reigning king of the Southern Rhone and why Cabernet Sauvignon and Merlot thrive in Bordeaux. This class will help demystify the wines of France so guests can shop confidently and navigate a restaurant wine list with ease.
- Champagne and Sparkling Wine – Celebrate Today
- Nothing screams “Celebrate!” better than a bottle of bubbly. This seminar is perfect for those looking to discover a sparkling wine that best suits any budget or palate. Learn all about the production processes and sparkling styles. Eight sparkling wines will be tasted, including Cava, Crémant de Bourgogne and stunning selections from Champagne. Guests will also enjoy exclusive Grand Cru selections. Cheers!
Learn About Beer Class Descriptions
$15 per Beer Class
12 Beer Selections
- Beer Styles & Smiles
- We’re bringing our “Total Guide to Beer” out of the book and into your glass! Encounter your favorite beer flavors while enjoying a tasting tour of different brews from the beer style categories in this easy-reading book our beer style guide. It’s discovery that’ll bring a smile to your face.
- Hoppy Beer IPA Fantasy
- America’s love affair with hops cannot be satiated, but we’re going to try! For existing hoppy beer lovers and thrill seekers alike, arouse your taste buds in this India Pale Ale (IPA) excursion. Styles on the menu include: English IPA, Belgian IPA, American IPA, American Double/Imperial IPA, and other hoppy, juicy goodness.
- Beer 101 – The Fundamentals of Beer Tasting
- An ideal seminar for customers learning the fundamentals of beer tasting. The class will cover the history of beer, ingredients, brewing process and various beer styles. Discover your favorite beer flavors while enjoying a tasting tour of different beer style categories.
- IPA Excursion – A Hops Adventure
- This is a great class for hoppy-beer enthusiasts and thrill-seekers alike. Learn the origin of the highly popular IPA style and the difference between hop varieties, as well as typical aromas and flavors. Featured styles will include English IPA, Belgian IPA, American IPA, American Double/Imperial IPA and more.
- Belgian Beer – Beer Me In Belgium
- Join us for an in-depth look at the amazing beers available from Belgium. The class will cover history, the brewing process, an explanation of different beer styles and an overview of the main breweries in Belgium. Authentic Trappist and Abbey ales will be featured, as well as beers from other countries inspired by the timeless brews of Belgium.
- Support Your Local Craft Breweries
- Craft beer has taken the country by storm. Today, there are more than 2,500 craft breweries in the United States, and the majority of Americans live within 10 miles of a craft brewer. From Flying Dog to Dogfish Head, the common thread between craft brewers is innovation. Brewers are building upon traditional ingredients and styles, experimenting and inventing with new techniques and favor profiles. Our store is teaming up with your local breweries to bring you a fun-filled class and lots of great beer to taste. Come discover your local flavor!
- Battle of the Beers – Old World vs. New World
- Experience a taste of Old World brewing history with a side-by-side comparison of New World beers. Savor classically brewed beers from Germany, Belgium and England alongside North American beers brewed with inspiration from these Old World styles. The past meets the present in this fun and flavorful tour of beer history.
- Brewery Spotlight
- Join us as we take a deep dive into some of our favorite breweries. We will partner with several regional breweries to bring customers a unique educational experience. From brewery history to beer-making techniques, attendees will have the opportunity to learn from the source and become brewery experts. Brewery partners are still being finalized, so check with your local store for more details.
- Fall Beer Is Here
- Experience the beer bounty of autumn. Along with tailgating, changing leaves and football watch parties come wonderful styles like Oktoberfest Lager and Pumpkin Ale. Enjoy a tasty exploration of the many interpretations, histories and ingredients of these classic fall beer styles.
- Brew Battle – Blind Tasting Beer Class
- This entertaining class offers the opportunity to blind-taste an assortment of delicious beers. Develop tasting skills as you learn to identify beers by qualities such as color, flavor and aromatics. Beers will be paired off for all to compare. Each pairing will feature two beers of the same style from two different breweries. Which beer is declared the winner? You’ll decide. a
Learn About Spirits Class Descriptions
$20 per Spirits Class
8 Spirits Selections
- The Bourbon Trail – Discovering America’s Spirit
- This seminar and tasting will review the history of whiskey-making in America, as well as answer the questions “What is Bourbon? Who makes it, and where? What does ‘small batch’ mean?” This class will answer all of these questions and expose a few myths in the process. Come see and taste why Bourbon is America’s greatest homegrown spirit.
- Introduction to Scotch Whisky
- This seminar and tasting is geared for the Scotch novice. We will be exploring its rich history and the fascinating processes that transform ordinary barley malt into a compelling and classic spirit. Enjoy the special pleasures of classic blended and rare single-malt Scotches.
- Spirits 101 – Nuts and Bolts of Booze
- This seminar is ideal for learning the fundamentals of tasting spirits. Learn the basics of vodka, gin, whiskey, tequila and brandy during this educational seminar. Explore the different histories, production methods, ingredients and flavor profiles of each main spirit type. Guests will also learn tips for making the perfect cocktail.
- Mixology 101 – Bartending Basics
- Join us for a fun seminar on basic bartending with a focus on vodka. This highly entertaining class will provide hands-on training to prepare and serve classic, vodka-based cocktails. Attendees will learn about bar setup and basic tools, as well as how to shake up delicious cocktail recipes. Gain the knowledge you need to impress your guests at your next party!
- Smoke Signals – Single Malts Experience
- Our two-hour session is ideal for any Scotch whisky enthusiast, and will immerse you in the world of single-malt Scotch whisky! We’ll explore its rich history and the fascinating processes that transform ordinary barley malt into a compelling and classic spirit, as well as examine the diversity of regions and styles available to the whisky enthusiast.