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WSET® Level 1 in Sake Online

Let us welcome you to a journey of exploring the delights of Japan's national drink - Sake. Discover in this course the most important characteristics and styles of sake and how to taste and describe these using the WSET Level 1 Systematic Approach to Tasting® (SAT). Learn the main ingredients and factors influencing the taste and aromatic of sake. Grasp the differences and similarities between the various styles of this Japanese rice wine. Through this course you also learn to understand Japanese labelling terms of the principal categories of sake. Additionally, learn how to store and serve sake and the key considerations when making a good and sake pairing combination.


This course is based around a 4-week, 7-module online learning programme with educator support available for this time. The course modules should be followed in order, but students are free to complete the modules at their own pace during this 4-week window. The course material should take about 6 hours in total to complete, plus revision time. Regular access and participation in the course online activities is essential for this mode of study.


The course prepares the student for the WSET® Level 1 Award in Sake and is guided by a WSET® educator. The students can contact the educator any time for the duration of the scheduled course, should they have any questions. Each module includes a series of independent activities to help students understand sake production and different styles of sake. 


Students are advised to taste a range of sakes during their studies. All the required sakes for the course can be found in the course specification. Students can post their tasting notes in the Online Classroom for review by the educator. 


Please note:

  • Sakes are not included in the cost of this course and although it will greatly improve your learning experience, it is not compulsory to taste any sake.


What you will learn

  • The typical characteristics of sake

  • The ingredients and the steps needed for the production of sake  

  • The principal categories and grades of sake 

  • How to describe sake using the WSET Level 1 Systematic Approach to Tasting® (SAT)

  • The differences and similarities between different styles of sake 

  • How to recognise Japanese labelling terms for some of the prinicipal categories of sake 

  • How to store and serve sake

  • The common faults found in sake

  • The key considerations when making a food and sake pairing recommendation


What you need

Students will need access to a computer and/or HTML5 compatible mobile or tablet with the following minimum requirements:

  • Internet Explorer 10, Firefox 25.0, Safari 6, Chrome 30.0 or other HTML5 compatible

  • Web browser with Javascript and cookies** enabled

  • Adobe Reader XI or equivalent

  • Internet access (broadband recommended) 


Entry requirements

No formal qualifications are required. Candidates should be over 18 years of age.

The course is delivered online and in English, therefore, basic computer literacy, internet navigation skills and a good level of English are required.



The examination date and location are provided when you book the course. If you want to arrange a new date, please contact us at least 10 working days before the set examination date.

The exam paper has 30 multiple-choice questions to be answered in 45 minutes.  A mark of 70% is required to pass.

Course fee

225,00 € - The course fee includes the WSET® Level 1 study guide, online tuition, exam, postage, certificate and lapel pin. Note: VAT-exempt according to § 4 No. 21 a) bb) UStG

Course specification

For more information and full details on the course requirements, please download the Specification below.

Specification (ENG)

Course Dates​​

  • Online Tuition: 18th Jul  to 14th Aug 2022 / Exam: 24th Aug at 18:00 Online or 28th Aug at 18:00 in Heidelberg / Registration Deadline: 8th Jul 2022

N.B. For booking through banking transfer contact us directly at

Frequently Asked Questions


How does the Online Classroom work?

After registration, you will receive an email from WSET® with instructions for signing into the Online Classroom. 

Once signed in, you will receive a course calendar with the weekly subjects, background information to read, activities relevant for each subject, tasting assignments (students have to supply their own samples) and quizzes. The results of your activities and tasting assignments need to be posted online. You can communicate with the online instructor and fellow students when it best suits you and not in real time. This interaction is crucial for success in this course. One or more mock exams form part of the study.


Is there a deadline for booking on to an online classroom course?

Yes.  You need to book at least 5 working days before the start of the course.


How will I know which sakes to taste?

Suggested and recommended sakes are detailed in the course specification.


What if I’m uncertain about any of the content of the course programme?

No problem.  Throughout the online course, you have access to a subject specialist educator online who will respond to your course-related query.

What is the recommended self-study time for this programme?

The online course material should take about 6 hours in total to complete. For a successful result, we do highly recommend that all students spend at least another 1-hour revision prior to sitting the exam.

How long can I take to complete my studies?

From enrolment, you have a full 12 months to complete the Online Classroom course and sit your exam. However, after the course end date, you will not be able to take part in any of the online activities and will no longer have the online educator support facility.  


Can I change my exam date?

If you need more time, we can arrange another mutually convenient date. Please note that we require a minimum of 10 working days’ notice prior to the exam day so that we can register you with WSET® Awards.


Can I sit the examination online?

Yes!! Students can decide to sit their exam at our premises or online through remote invigilation. For the remote invigilation, students will need a reliable internet connection and both a computer and a smartphone. 

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