Two Master of Wine students awarded Feudi di San Gregorio scholarship
Two Master of Wine students, Amanda Barnes and Philipp Pfunder, have been selected for the 2023 Feudi di San Gregorio scholarship. Amanda and Philipp are stage two students and will receive £1,500 each to support their MW studies.
Founded in 1986 in Campania, Southern Italy, for thirty years the Feudi di San Gregorio winery has made a special focus of the indigenous grape varieties Greco, Fiano and Aglianico from the Campania regional tradition. All this time, the winery has studied and researched its terroir, Irpinia, which is well-suited to growing high quality vines.
On May 2021, Feudi di San Gregorio changed its legal status into a Benefit Company with the ultimate aim of safeguarding and promoting the natural environment, and the social and cultural heritage of the Irpinian territory and its community. In August 2021 it has obtained the Equalitas Corporate certification and from now on is part of the B Corp Community.
Open to both stage one and stage two students, applicants were asked to write an essay which responded to the following question:
How can old vines & ancestral practices of viticulture help to tackle the effects of climate change?
Amanda Barnes is a freelance wine writer, presenter and author of The South America Wine Guide. She has specialised in the wines of South America since 2009, although has always eagerly explored different wine regions around the world.
Philipp is currently the head winemaker at Law Estate wines in Paso Robles California, and this year will mark his 8th vintage. His involvement in the wine industry began in 2007 when he moved to New Zealand to pursue a master’s degree in Wine Science. Philipp spent the following six years between New Zealand and the north hemisphere, where he spent three years at Chateau Angelus in Saint Emilion, and two vintages in Napa.
Antonio Capaldo, President of Feudi di San Gregorio, said: “I wish to congratulate the winners and to thank all participants. The level of the essays has been very high also this year, confirming that the old vine topic is gaining focus and that climate change is a critical theme for our sector in the coming years.”
Sarah Harrison, Head of Operations at the Institute of Masters of Wine, commented: “Congratulations to Amanda and Phillip, who wrote impressive essays and were awarded this scholarship amongst fierce competition. I would also like to say thank you to Feudi di San Gregorio for their generosity in awarding these scholarships for the second year running. Undertaking the MW is a serious commitment, and scholarships such as these can make a huge difference to students as they study.”
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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 uphold the highest standards of commercial conduct within the industry. Today, there are 416 Masters of Wine working in 31 countries. The membership encompasses winemakers, sommeliers, buyers, journalists, shippers, consultants, viticulturalists, academics, educators and more. There are 349 students from 40 countries in the 2022-23 MW study programme. The IMW works with 36 supporters and three research and industry associates, who help promote the IMW’s mission. The five principal supporters are Austrian Wine, AXA Millésimes, Constellation Brands, the Madame Bollinger Foundation, and Waitrose and Partners.