Getting Ready for the MW…for the Last Time

Now that harvest is over, I must once again turn my attention to preparing for the Master of Wine exam next June. Yet again, I’m at my last chance to pass the exam. However, this time next year, I will have passed and will be working on my dissertation or I will have failed and won’t have to worry about the exam. There are only two options this time and neither involves me taking the exam again after June. There is a comfort in that.

There are three of us at the same point in the program and although I’m the only one of the three on my last chance, we are calling ourselves “The Three Musketeers”. It’s nice to have company on what is inevitably a lonely journey. For me, I am as determined as ever. I have changed mentors and have cut up and folded the questions from the last 10 years of practical exams. I was stunned to realize the last 4 of which I actually sat so I will be rewriting exams I’ve written before. My hope is, that by using the same technique as I did to study for theory, I will be able to anticipate the questions for this June’s exam. I’m also sure that by honing my writing technique I’ll be more efficient with my time during the exam, allowing me to spend less time thinking of my answers and more time actually dissecting the wines themselves.

Finally, this year will be the most challenging as I try to juggle the demands of the program with being the mother of an active toddler, wife, and full time winemaker. This harvest has been one of the most challenging due to the extreme compaction and the fact that the life with a baby eliminates the simple down time after work that I’ve used in past harvests to recover from long hours at the winery. I went into the harvest more energized yet more tired than ever before and I have come out on the other side very happy with quality and exhausted. We worked hard to capture the essence of this vintage and I feel that we succeeded. Hopefully the MW program will use a different part of my brain to give other parts time to rest.

Only the next 7 months until June!

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