Hi all! I have the opportunity to take the Certified Sake Adviser Course and Exam and was wondering if anyone else has and what your experience was like. I have studied sake for the CMS exams, but not much deeper than that. What other information should I seek out to study and how deep do I need to go before taking the course?
I took it with Timothy Sullivan a few years ago and thought it was great. The knowledge I gained from the course material and instruction caused me fall in love with sake. I'd highly recommend it to anyone with even a slight interest in the beverage.
I agree whole-heartedly with Jeremy in this one. I’m not sure if Tim is back to teaching the course after his year spent with Hakkaisan, but it’s definitely worth it.
Thank you so much! I feel like it is one of m weakest subjects and I am in a shop that moves quite a bit of sake. What kind of preparation do you think is necessary?
I believe the course material and lecture will be plenty of necessary information to pass exam. I began the study of sake in 2008 with John Gauntner. He also offers an Advance course in Tokyo. You tour many breweries while there. This is a great option if you choose to go beyond the Sake Advisor Certification. I am forever grateful for the opportunity to study in Japan in 2009. It also led me to an opportunity to work as a kurabito in Osaka @ Daimon Shuzo with Toji Yasutaka Daimon. Kanpai!
Hey Mark. I just took this course a couple of days ago in Philadelphia and highly recommend it! Timothy Sullivan is teaching it again, and his knowledge about sake is well worth it.
As far as preparing goes, I was in a similar situation as you. I really only knew the basics. The Sake School of America will send you a binder with information once you register for the course, or 2 weeks before the course if you've already registered. It has all the information you need for the course/the exam. Also during the course, Tim will go over every section of the binder, but at a fast pace, so I recommend reading it thoroughly before the course.
As someone who really knew nothing about sake, I learned so much, and you get to taste a ton of really delicious sake! Have fun!
How long is the binder of information??? Given my schedule i will only have 6 days to prepare for the exam. I'm taking CMS Certified Exam on 12/3 and i have the option to take the Sake Advisor Exam 12/10... i refuse to study Sake until after my CMS exam.... is my small window of time enough?
Sake is testable at the CMS Certified Exam. I would study a little bit.
I'll use this opportunity to plug our Sake Expanded Guide and the recording of MS Rebecca Fineman's webinar on the topic...!
Depends. If you just want the credential and lapel pin, some can do it in six days with some effort. If you want to gain something memorable from it and get the most out of the lectures and tastings along with a life-long foundation on sake, then maybe wait until you can devote more time to your study.
I would recommend studying for the CSA course in tandem with preparation for your CMS Certified exam. Having taken the CSA course, all of the information you need to pass is covered in both the material they send to you as well as the day-long seminar that you attend before the exam. There will most likely be a question or two on Sake in your CMS exam as well, seeing as it is an important facet of the world of wine and spirits.
One thing I would say though (and it could just be internet verbiage or tone that's being misconstrued on my end), is don't ever "refuse" an opportunity to learn more about your profession. Every trade tasting, masterclass, brewery tour, wine trip, or visit to your favorite liquor store can prove invaluable towards bettering yourself as a professional (therefore enhancing your ability to move forward throughout the court).