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How to get a job as a winemaker

You'll also need to be physically fit as being a winemaker involves a lot of hard physical work with tough harvest seasons and long hours

So, you'd like to be a winemaker.

There's something perennially romantic and classy about the idea of making wine. It's easy to conjure up images of sprawling, sun-kissed vineyards, old oak barrels and slow motion close-ups of wine splashing majestically into curled crystal stemware. And wine is something many people choose very carefully to accompany their meals, so good wine is something that's certainly noticed and appreciated. Winemaking is a combination of art, craft and science.

A passionate interest in all things wine-related is the principal necessary characteristic of anyone looking to become a winemaker, but it isn't the only one. You'll also need to be physically fit as being a winemaker involves a lot of hard physical work with tough harvest seasons and long hours. Some knowledge of grapes and fermentation processes would also be useful, so a background in chemistry wouldn't go astray.

Being a good winemaker also requires an interest in marketing, sales and finance for the commercial side of your enterprise.

Regarding more formal qualifications, Hunter TAFE offers a Certificate III in Wine Industry Operations at its Kurri Kurri Campus. There are no entry requirements for this course and it covers wine industry operational areas such as bottling and packaging, cellar door sales and operations, laboratory, warehousing and wine grape growing.

If you're more of a wine hobbyist, there's the 3-week Wine Making & Wine Appreciation, or a little more advanced Sommelier course. This is a less involved course in which students will gain an extensive knowledge of blending and finishing red and white wines and also the bottling process.

There are so many aspects to being a winemaker. Whether its the scientific side of it, the sales and marketing side or simply the satisfaction of enjoying a glass of your own creation with some cheese and crackers, this is a vocation that will just keep getting better and better with age.