Crush Course Wine Academy

NEW:  In-Person Wine Classes in Healdsburg!

I’m Mary Beth Vierra, Certified Wine Educator and founder of Crush Course. Whether you’re a wine industry pro, passionate enthusiast, or starting to explore, my classes promise to elevate your wine fluency, enjoyment, and expertise.

Classes are now open for enrollment. Enroll today!

Or, invite me to host a wine experience or master class for your wine trade team, team-building sessions, or group events.

Enrolling Now

Navigating Wine Style

     -at The Drink, Leo Steen Wines, Healdsburg


WINE STYLE — 3-Class Series

What elements shape a wine’s style? In this series we explore the keys that unlock a wine’s essence. Mastering the 4 Ws of wine—What, When, Where, and Who—will boost your confidence to navigate the wine world with ease.

Class 1 provides my Crush Course framework for decoding a wine’s character. Classes 2 & 3 offer deeper exploration and discussion applied to white, then red wines of the world. *ENROLL IN ALL 3 Classes for a 20% discount, or 2 Classes for 15% off.  Multi-class discounts automatically applied in your cart.

Wine Exploration Tastings

1-hour guided tastings, learning


With wine, half the joy is in the discovery!  For wine lovers of all levels- early enthusiasts to industry pros. Get the inside scoop on wine, grapes or regions, tips for understanding wine style, and strategies for inspired food pairings.  Join us each tasty week as we taste, discover, and learn something new.

Explore Past Classes.   Perfect for groups and team building

Coming Soon

Dates to be announced -or- Book your own 

Pro Seminars:

Pinot Noir – The Prince of “Transparent” Reds

The Wines of Italy  [Program: 5 classes ]

Appreciation Level Seminars: 

Wine Confidence: Decoding the Wine Label, Wine List, Wine Aisle

Wine Basics: The Lay of the Land   [ Mini-program: 3 classes ]
*The Making of Flavor & Style   *Top White Varieties  *Top Red Varities

Wine Exploration: 

Crushable, Chillable Reds

LaDolce Vita: Italy in Your Glass  [ Themed Series:  3 classes ]
*Italian Wine Made Simple  *talian WHITES  *Italian REDS

  • Certified Wine Educator (CWE
  • Italian Wine Scholar (IWS) ~ Wine Scholar Guild
  • Italian Wine Ambassador (IWA) ~ VinItaly
  • California Wine Appellation Specialist (CWAS)
  • Certified Specialist of Spirits (CSS)
  • Masters’ Degree in Rhetoric, UC Davis (MA)

Why Mary Beth?


Mary Beth Vierra, founder of Crush Course and Certified Wine Educator, brings over sixteen years of wine education expertise, including managing wine and spirits education for a top-tier global winery. She directed product learning for their nationwide sales teams, hospitality staff, and customers. Known for her approachable style and infectious enthusiasm, Mary Beth excels at making the complex world of wine easy to understand. Whether leading wine country trips across the US and abroad or guiding wine enthusiasts to build their confidence, she consistently receives praise for her ability to inspire curiosity and impart knowledge.

Her unique approach combines classroom learning with immersive, hands-on experiences in vineyards and wineries. Fluent in Italian and deeply versed in Italian wine culture, Mary Beth is a certified Italian Wine Scholar, Italian Wine Ambassador, and instructor for the Italian Wine Scholar program. Having lived in Italy for five years, she brings a rich understanding of Italian wines and their diverse grape varieties.

Also certified as California Wine Appellation Specialist, she feels fortunate to live in view of the vines in Healdsburg, California, at the happy convergence of three premier Sonoma County AVAs—Russian River Valley, Dry Creek Valley, and Alexander Valley.       

“I find wine endlessly fascinating – a blend of art, science, nature and passion.” ~ Mary Beth

Wine Explorations & Discoveries


Interactive Exploration & Guided Discovery Tastings          Learner:  ALL LEVELS 

Virtual Exploration Tastings are for wine lovers of all levels, from early enthusiasts to industry professionals. Mary Beth Vierra shares her passion, knowledge, and the inside scoop on wine, grapes or regions, tips for understanding wine style, and strategies for inspired food pairings. Mary Beth makes wine approachable and fun, and she always has some tips up her sleeve to pique your curiosity, make sense of the sometimes puzzling wine world, and help  expand your wine palate with discovery and confidence.  BROWSE CLASSES

Starting at $55pp


Master Classses & Seminars

1.5 to 3-hr

Gain deeper knowledge of a specific wine topic, skill or region with these interactive wine education classes. Included with each seminar/workshop:

  • Tasting Mat
  • Sensory Evaluation Tasting Grid
  • Handout/Worksheet(s)

Starting at $75 pp   

BROWSE CLASSESEnroll in individual seminars, or for deeper skill, look for classes in a themed series or part of a larger expertise program (coming soon).

Pro Classes  (Interm to Adv):  For trade professionals, to expand and deepen their knowledge of wine topics/regions and sharpen their wine fluency. Fantastic support for wine certifications. Well-suited for the motivated wine enthusiast to aficionado. 

Appreciation Classes (Intro to Interm):  For novice to wine enthusiast and servers wanting a jump-start or a refresh, Mary Beth makes the world and language of wine approachable, understandable, and more enjoyable. Learn the “whys,” “hows” and beauty of wine. Feel empowered in the wine aisle, restaurant and comfortable selecting, talking about, and enjoying this magical beverage. 

Programs & Series

SERIES:  Keep an eye out for multiple Explorations or Seminars under a wine theme you love. Maybe it’s Wine and Food Pairing, or La Dolce Vita: A Taste of Italy, or Duelling Wines (compare/contrast a grape across regions or styles).  Don’t miss your favorites  *Multi-class discounts available

PROGRAMS:  (Coming Soon)  Assure you are on a path to success with longer-term or intensive multi-class programs on a topic of wine expertise. Go deep and set your sights on success.  Programs can range from 4 -5 classes up to 10.  Some programs cumulate in a certificate. Take a few single modules, or enroll in the full program for mastery.

Let us know the deeper mastery skills most important to you. We may offer:

* Wine Foundations

* Wine 101

* World Wine Regions

* The Wines of Italy

* Great Wine Varieties of the World

* The Wine Host: Confident Wine & Food Paring, Buying, Serving