Select Page

MW student Aki Wong awarded FICOFI scholarship

MW student Aki Wong awarded FICOFI scholarship

The Institute of Masters of Wine is delighted to announce that Master of Wine student Aki Wong has been awarded the 2021 FICOFI scholarship.

The FICOFI scholarship is open to stage two students in the MW study programme based in Mainland China, Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan or Singapore. FICOFI is a private club that aims to connect the finest producers to the most discerning wine lovers who share a passion for Grand Crus. It has offices in Paris, Bordeaux, Singapore and Hong Kong.

Stage two student Aki Wong grew up in New Zealand and is now based in her native Hong Kong. Formerly a business analyst and customer relationship management consultant, Aki switched to the wine industry in 2011 after backpacking for a year in Europe. Alongside her acquisition of wine qualifications such as WSET Diploma, Certified Sommelier and Certified Wine Educator, she has previously worked with various fine wine importers and principals, including Accolade Wines. A pop-up sommelier, seasonal wine judge and columnist, she co-founded a wine school in 2017. During the same year, her love for the Nebbiolo grape led her to become knighted by the Order of the Truffle and Wines of Alba.

On receiving the FICOFI scholarship, Aki said, “This is extremely thrilling. Having been a FICOFI sommelier in Hong Kong previously, I have admired how they have treated customers with their high standards of attention to detail and ways to enhance customers’ drinking experience. I am committed to doing the same. The journey of constant improvement of oneself and the ability to inspire is my key motivation in pursuing the Master of Wine title. The scholarship will allow me to continue deepening my knowledge via reading and visiting vineyards, and articulate them to any wine lovers that I am in touch with.”

Aki receives £5,000 to be put towards MW study programme fees, exam sitting fees as well as to cover some travel costs or any expenses related to accessing wine tastings important for her studies.


For more information contact:
Sarah Kirkpatrick
Head of Marketing, Communications and Membership
Institute of Masters of Wine
+44 (0)207 383 9131

Notes to Editors:

About the Institute of Masters of Wine (IMW)
The IMW is a membership organisation with an exceptional international reputation. For almost 70 years, its members – the Masters of Wine (MWs) – have been at the forefront of leadership and expertise in the world of wine. The IMW’s mission is to promote excellence, interaction and learning across all sectors of the global wine community. MWs prove their comprehensive understanding of wine by passing the MW exam, recognised worldwide for its rigour and exacting standards. In addition to passing the exam, members must sign the code of conduct before they are entitled to use the initials MW. This requires them to act with honesty and integrity, and use every opportunity to share their knowledge of wine with others. Today, there are 409 Masters of Wine working in 30 countries. The membership encompasses winemakers, sommeliers, buyers, journalists, shippers, consultants, academics, educators and more. There were 341 students from over 40 countries in the 2019-2020 MW study programme.

FICOFI is a company founded in 1990 by Philippe Capdouze and connects the finest producers with the most discerning wine lovers who share a passion for Grands Crus and great terroirs. FICOFI has been rooted in exceptional relationships with the owners and representatives of the best Châteaux & Domaines and share this unique access exclusively with more than 280 Members of Le Club FICOFI® who are based all around the world. FICOFI crafts unique experiences through winemaker dinners, annual flagship events, estate visits in France, Italy, Napa, Spain etc and many other services like storage with a dedicated and personal cellaring & insurance services. Every year FICOFI supports several charities related to the world of wine. FICOFI performs all these activities with an unwavering faith in and commitment to values affirmed more than 30 years ago: FICOFI stands for, in Latin, FIdelitas (loyalty), COncordia (harmony, sharing, uniting), FIducia (trust).