You may have seen Candace Olsen in An American in Paris on Broadway. But in early October, when the show finished its run, Olsen enrolled in the International Culinary Center’s Intensive Sommelier Training program, as one of the two winners of W&S’s first wine education scholarships. The ten-week class, directed by Scott Carney, MS, is designed to have students ready to hit the floor as soon as they graduate, as well as prepare them for the Certified exam from the Court of Master Sommeliers. Olsen, whose interest in wine was sparked by meals she ate in Paris while on tour, has already completed the Level 2 WSET wine program and is booking a harvest internship in South America this winter; she hopes to be performing the sort of wine-and-food pairing magic that inspired her career change as soon as she graduates.
In California, Minjeong Lee won the scholarship to the course at ICC’s Silicon Valley campus. A graphic designer by training, Lee was working on the branding for Jungsik in NYC when the 50-page wine list, drawn up by Kyung-Moon Kim, MS, drew her attention, and she began experimenting with wine pairings. “Studying the characteristics of a dish and finding a well-balanced match was an eye-opening experience,” she says. “As a graphic designer, I saw many similarities between cooking, wine pairing and design.” Having already completed courses in Japanese cooking, sake and wine in Seoul, she’s hoping to open her own restaurant after graduation.
This story was featured in W&S December 2016.
photo of Candace Olsen by Mike Rush