The Certified Sommelier Examinations focus on a candidate’s ability to demonstrate proficiency in deductive tasting, wine & beverage theory, and both technical as well as salesmanship skills in table-side service.
The title and credential of ‘Certified Sommelier’ is well recognized in the hospitality sector globally. Wearing the Certified Sommelier lapel pin ensures an employer and dining public that you have skills in salesmanship, the beverage program, and wine tasting abilities that have been tested by the Court of Master Sommeliers, Americas. A theoretical knowledge of the world of wine and beverages will also provide for on call knowledge when required.
The Certified Sommelier Examination is a one-day examination with three sections:
Tasting Examination: Utilizing the Court of Master Sommeliers Deductive Tasting Method, candidates must describe and identify four wines (two white and two red) to the best of their ability. This is a written tasting that must be completed in 30 minutes. Download the CMS Deductive Tasting Format, Certified Sommelier Exam Tasting Grids, and Certified Examination Grape Varieties and Wines Red & White here.
Theory Examination: The theory examination tests candidates' knowledge and understanding of the world of wine, beverage, and the sommelier trade. The test consists of multiple choice, short answer, simple math, and matching questions. Candidates must complete the 45-question examination within 35 minutes.
Service Examination: The practical service examination approximates a real restaurant environment, and candidates are expected to demonstrate salesmanship and knowledge while performing a variety of tableside tasks. Candidates may be asked to open still or sparkling wines, to recommend cocktails or spirits, to discuss food and wine paring options, and to generally show their abilities as a restaurant sommelier. Candidates must arrive appropriately dressed and equipped for professional restaurant wine service. Download the CMS-A Service Standards here.
Passing requirement: A candidate must achieve a minimum of 60% on each section within one exam sitting. Successful candidates will receive a certificate and lapel pin signifying their certification as a sommelier by the Court of Master Sommeliers.