Weinakademie Österreich - training centre for private wine lovers and professionals
Get professional wine tasting and assessment skills
Study trips to different wine growing areas
Graduation Ceremony - Esterházy Palace
Marchese Piero Antinori, Lynne D. Sherriff MW, Stefan Tscheppe and Dr. Josef Schuller MW
Istituto Grandi Marchi

“The coolest WSET Diploma program on the planet!"

We have repeatedly heard this phrase from our international Diploma students from more than fourty different countries. See below a short film about the locations and venues of our international Diploma program: beginning at the picturesque Austrian Wine Academy campus in Rust and continuing to Florence and Tuscany via Alto Adige and Swiss wine regions and on to Geisenheim University in Germany’s Rheingau and then back to Austria to the annual graduation ceremony in the splendid Haydn Hall at Esterhazy Palace. Visits to top producers and stunning wineries in all these countries are part of the program. Get an inside view of the Diploma program!


Dr. Josef Schuller MW winner of the Vinitaly International Award 2023

The prestigious Vinitaly International Award was initiated in 1996 and is annually awarded by Veronafiere to an international company or personality for their special contributions to the world of wine. Amongst the recipients in the past were personalities such as Robert Mondavi, Piero Antinori, Hugh Johnson or Steven Spurrier. Veronafiere president Frederico Bricolo presented the Vinitaly International Award 2023 to Dr. Josef Schuller MW for his contributions to global wine education at the opening ceremony of Vinitaly 2023 in Verona on April 2.

President Bricolo pointed out:” Dr. Josef Schuller MW is the founder and managing director of the Austrian Wine Academy, the largest wine school on the continent. The Wine Academy has been active in Austria and its neighbouring countries for 35 years and provides education for 15.000 students annually. The Academy has been offering the WSET Diploma qualification since 2015 also in Italy. Alto Adige and Florence are the Diploma course centers and Veronafiere welcomes the Academy´s Diploma students annually to Operawine and Vinitaly. Dr. Josef Schuller MW passed his MW exam 25 years ago and became the first Austrian MW and 10 years later he was elected as the first non-British Chairman of the Institute of Masters of Wine in 2008. For the past 20 years he has been involved in organizing the European MW course at the Austrian Wine Academy in Rust and until today more than 100 MWs have started their MW education at the Campus of Austrian Wine Academy.”

33 new Weinakademiker Diploma graduates from 14 countries – Anton Kollwentz and Willi Klinger Weinakademiker H.C.!

Graduates of the 29th Diploma class of the Austrian Wine Academy were awarded the prestigious title Weinakademiker at the end of October in Esterházy Palace in Eisenstadt. Anton Kollwentz and Willi Klinger were the first representatives of the Austrian wine branch to be awarded the title of Weinakademiker H. C. for their outstanding contributions to the Wine Academy and to Austrian wine culture.

With the class of 2022, the alumni of the Austrian Wine Academy grew to well over 1,000 Weinakademiker, who now come from 48 different nations. Among the new graduates is the first female Weinakademiker from Venezuela. The 33 new Weinakademiker have come a long way and only a few managed to complete this training in the absolute minimum duration of two years. The average study time is three to four years, and at the end candidates must present a diploma thesis and pass a colloquium.

the Haydn Quartett added a special touch to the graduation ceremony

The title Weinakademiker is both a distinction and a mission. Weinakademiker join the graduate association "Weinakademiker Club" and commit themselves to a code of honour that postulates permanent further education and the highest ethical standards. Many Weinakademiker hold leading positions in the international wine industry and this training is also the recommended preliminary stage to the elite Master of Wine qualification.

One of the highlights of the graduation ceremony was Willi Klinger's laudatory speech and the conferment of the title of Weinakademiker H.C to Anton Kollwentz. After his splendid laudation for Anton Kollwentz, Willi Klinger was surprised by three Masters of Wine. Caro Maurer MW, Roman Horvath MW, and Justin Howard-Sneyd MW launched into a laudation for him. Willi Klinger was honoured as the second Weinakademiker H.C. of the evening.

Anton Kollwentz (left) and Willi Klinger (right) with DI Josef Glatt, Austrian Wine Academy

The supporting programme of the graduation ceremonies started the evening before the graduation at Esterházy Palace with a large, seated gala tasting for around 150 guests. At "Six Masters of Wine and their Wines", six MWs presented their wines from Navarra, Priorat, Roussillon, Austria, and Israel. On the morning of the graduation day, Justin Howard-Sneyd MW and Eran Pick MW held exclusive master classes on Roussillon and Israel for Weinakademiker.

Director of the Austrian Wine Academy Dr. Josef Schuller MW states, "Our international Weinakademiker community is playing an increasingly important role in the international wine scene. Of course, we are particularly proud of this year's two new Weinakademiker H.C. from Austria. Their 15 international colleagues include among others, Jancis Robinson MW, Dr. Monika Christmann, and Marchese Piero Antinori; together they are superstars of the wine world. We want to celebrate that accordingly." After two years of pandemic-related restrictions, celebrations were again possible. Weinakademiker winemakers from all over Austria presented their wines to the guests and the new Wine Academy graduates after the graduation ceremony, and new and old friendships were forged.

Die Weinakademiker Awards

Again this year there were outstanding achievements in subject areas of the Weinakademiker training, which were rewarded with scholarships and prizes:

The Erbslöh Geisenheim Award for the best examination paper in viticulture and cellar management, endowed with € 500, went to José Mas Barbera.

The Wine & Co Tasting Trophy for the best tasting examination went to Fabio Gölles. The prize includes a voucher for € 1000.

The Wein & Co Sparkling Wine Trophy for the best result in the sparkling wine exam went to Regina Melzer. The prize includes a voucher for € 1000.

The SPAR Spirits Award for the best spirits exam went to Klaudija Scitovsky. The prize is endowed with € 500.

The SPAR Award "Wines of the World" for the best theory exam went to Adriana Díaz Triana. The prize is endowed with € 500.

The Esterházy Award for the best result in wine business includes a trip to Burgenland for two people and a gourmet programme at the Esterházy wine, culture and gourmet establishments and went to Luca Ardiri.

The ÖWM Scholarship for an outstanding diploma thesis in marketing includes a special wine study trip to VIEVINUM and went to Joan Harnish.

The Wine Academy Top Student Award went to Fabio Gölles. It encompasses wine study trips to Austria, Germany, Alto Adige, and Switzerland as well as an invitation from the Institute of Masters of Wine to the opening day of the 2023 Master of Wine course in Rust.

18th Master of Wine Seminar at the Austrian Wine Academy

The third attempt was finally successful! After two cancellations related to pandemic restrictions in January 2021 and 2022 the annual MW seminar could take place at the Austrian Wine Academy headquarters in March 2022. In addition to London, Bordeaux, Napa, and Sydney this course for MW students from around the globe has also taken place in Rust since 2004. Over the years, more than 100 MWs have begun their MW studies with this mandatory week in Rust.

This year, more than 60 MW students and MWs spent a week in a safe “Covid-free bubble” at the Academy. Four Weinakademiker graduates of the Austrian Wine Academy were among the new MW students to begin their journey to become an MW: Isabella Rutayungwa from Germany, Arpine Manukyan from Armenia, Gerd Peitner from Alto Adige, and Zsombor Pádár from Hungary. The photo shows the MW group in their only moment without masks on the Haydn Saal stage at Schloss Esterhazy.

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