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Reasons to study WSET
To date, Wine Courses Barcelona has seen students from 54 different nationalities complete a WSET course. Some of those, very like ourselves, have moved far from home and chosen to settle in the Catalan capital. Others are passing through on their travels or for work and are stopping off for a little wine education. So why Barcelona? While we can think of hundreds of reasons to love Barcelona (especially if you’re an oenophile), we’ve rounded up the top five reasons we think it’s the best place on earth to expand your wine horizons.
1. Barcelona is beautiful
With 4 kilometres of sandy beaches and year-round sunshine, it’s the perfect spot to soak up the rays and enjoy the Mediterranean lifestyle. That means hora de vermut (early evening vermouth and snacks), incredible food including world-class seafood and sun-ripened vegetables, Sunday strolls along the beach and buzzing terraces. Along with Michelin-starred restaurants from some of Spain’s most talented chefs, you’ll find raucous tapas bars, tiny hole-in-the-wall gems and a range of cuisines from the city’s multicultural populace. The cultural offering is out of this world (more on sightseeing below), with museums, art galleries, gigs and events galore, and shopaholics are also spoiled for choice from big brands to local boutiques. If you’re just passing through, there are thousands of hotel options and holiday rentals to suit every budget.
2. It is surrounded by vineyards and wineries
Barcelona is perfectly situated for enotourism, for those who want to see what they’re learning in the classroom in action. The nearest DO (Denomination of Origin, or quality area for wines) is DO Alella, just North of Barcelona in the Costa Maresme. Half an hour on the bus will get you there and a brisk walk will take you to the door of Alta Alella, one of the town’s best wineries with views of the Mediterranean sea from their 60 hectares of organic vineyards. They produce a fabulous range of still wines and Cavas and run tours three times a week. Head the other way on the train South from Barcelona’s Plaça de Catalunya and you’ll reach Sant Sadurní d’Anoia in around 40 minutes. This little town hides secrets beneath it’s streets: Cava cellars! You can wander from one to another easily, with tours available of industry giants like Freixenet (whose cellars extend 8 floors below ground and are toured by train!), along with smaller artisanal producers like Corpinnat’s Recaredo and Gramona. Got more time on your hands? Rent a car and head on down to Priorat! There’s no place on earth quite like it: breathtakingly dramatic slopes are covered in plates of its famous dark llicorella soils and old, gnarled vines. It’s hard to believe they can grow anything here but they do! We recommend a visit to Clos Figueras in Gratallops or Mas Doix in Poboleda to learn more. Drive carefully!
3. Wine bar hopping
After a long day in the WSET classroom, you’ll deserve a glass of wine, and it’s a great way to keep learning (we think!). Born is a popular area for visitors and boasts plenty of options: Eldiset, L’Anima del Vi and Bar Brutal are a few of our favourites. Gracia makes for a great evening of tasting opportunities if you want to take in a few different spots. Starting on the outskirts at Bar Mut, you’ve then got Extra Bar (where the food is divine!), Viblioteca (did someone say cheese?), Bocanariz, Bar Salvatge and La Graciosa to whet your whistle. Gabriela rounded up more of our top picks for this article. Just don’t forget to take your pen and paper to make a tasting note!
4. Sightseeing heaven
When you’re not studying, in class or hitting the wine bars for research, you’ll have to make time for some sightseeing. Antoni Gaudí’s breath-taking architecture includes Casa Batlló, La Pedrera and, of course, the work-in-progress Sagrada Familia, but also some lesser-known gems such as Casa Vicens. For something more modern check out the Fundacio Antoni Tàpies or the brand new Moco Museum. Then immerse yourself in Catalan culture through the ages at the Museu Nacional d’Art de Catalunya. Located at Plaça Espanya, it is full to the brim with thousands of years of artworks up to the present day and, if you’re here in summer, will give you some respite from the heat. From there, you can take an evening stroll up Montjuic, spotting some of the 1992 Olympic stadiums, Mies Van der Rohe Pavilion, the Joan Miró museum and incredible views over the city and coastline. Phew… tired yet? Must be time for la hora de vermut overlooking the sea at Terraza Martinez!
5. You can study with Wine Courses Barcelona!
Wine Courses Barcelona has been teaching WSET courses since 2015. We’ve welcomed over 600 students into the classroom and are so proud to have seen them develop, gain confidence and achieve their goals with their new found credentials. We believe that learning about wine should always be fun and try to remove so much of the snobbishness and elitism that can surround talk about wine. Because wine is about sharing! Sharing knowledge, sharing experience, bottles and laughs. Fortunately, our passion translates into real results, with superb pass rates across all levels. Our teachers are native speakers with extensive experience in the wine, hospitality and retail sectors, and are here to help you realise your career objective, delve into your new hobby or maybe just to pick out a great bottle. Just wait and see where WSET will take you!
So, there you have it: five excellent reasons to study WSET in Barcelona. This beautiful city has so much to offer wine lovers, food lovers, culture lovers… everyone! For any questions regarding WSET courses or any of the services offered by Wine Courses Barcelona, get in touch with firstname.lastname@example.org or give us a call. Wish you were here? Grab a glass, get involved in Barcelona!
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