Covid-19 Response

WSET partners with Teeling Whiskey, the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards and the Irish Whiskey & Spirits Institute to offer spirits courses to hospitality professionals


WSET partners with Teeling Whiskey, the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards and the Irish Whiskey & Spirits Institute to offer spirits courses to hospitality professionals.

We are delighted to announce that today we have launched an initiative in partnership with Teeling Whiskey, the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards and the Irish Whiskey & Spirits Institute to support Irish hospitality workers during the COVID-19 crisis.

The initiative will enable hospitality staff who have lost their jobs due to the current crisis to take an online WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits, increasing their industry knowledge and skills as they prepare to re-join the workforce. 40 bartenders, waiters or barbacks, aged over 18, will be able to sign-up to the WSET Level 1 Award in Spirits, which can be studied at home and lasts approximately four weeks.

The course which is co-funded by WSET and the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards is being facilitated by Teeling Whiskey and by WSET Approved Programme Provider Nick Ryan of The Irish Whiskey & Spirits Institute.

Additionally, Edward Dillon Company is very generously providing students with a selection of spirits across the category from their premium portfolio such as; Bacardi Carta Blanca Rum, Bombay Sapphire, Hennessy Cognac and Jack Daniels Tennessee Whiskey among others. These tasting kits will be used as samples throughout the course.

Charlie McCarthy, WSET Business Development Manager EMEA Spirits, said: "This is a very hard time for the Irish hospitality industry and, in particular, for service staff. We felt that it was time for us all to band together to help our community."

Kevin Hurley of the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards added: "In light of everything that is going on in the world at the moment, and the profound effect that it is having on our industry, it is crucially important that we keep our community intact and don’t lose promising bartenders to other industries. We hope this initiative may go some way towards helping people upskill and add a recognised qualification to their CV."

Robert Caldwell, Global Brand Ambassador Teeling Whiskey and Co-Founder of the Irish Craft Cocktail Awards, commented: "The hospitality industry has been decimated throughout this pandemic and few can predict what the future holds for our trade. All we can do is remain positive, work together as a community and try maintain some semblance of normality by continuing with our professional education."

Each student accepted on to the course will be invited to attend a final exam in the Teeling Distillery in Dublin at a time when market conditions allow. Successful students will receive a WSET certificate and lapel pin, both of which are internationally recognised across the industry.

To apply for a place, please register your interest here before 1st June 2020. Successful applicants will be contacted by email with full course details.

 For more details of WSET's Online Classroom and the online Level 1 Award in Spirits course, click here.