Our Instructors
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Michael Wangbickler, AIWS, CWE

WSET-Certified Educator

Lead Instructor



Michael Wangbickler holds a Level 4 Diploma from London-based Wine and Spirit Education Trust (WSET) and is an Associate member of the Institute of Wines & Spirits (AIWS). He is recognized as a WSET Certified Educator and a Certified Wine Educator (CWE) by the Society of Wine Educators. Mike has been teaching about wine for more than ten years, most recently with the Discover Wine & Spirits Academy (DWS), where he is Lead Instructor. He also leads several seminars and workshops on wine and wine marketing throughout the world.

 

He feels passionately about wine and believes that everybody can benefit from some level of education on the subject. His ultimate goal is to give every one of his students the tools they need to appreciate, market, and sell wine with confidence.

Besides his position at DWS, Mike currently holds the position of Senior Account Manager at Balzac Communications and Marketing in Napa, California. He also sits on the Board of Directors for the Drink Local Wine organization.


In addition to his wine credentials, Mike holds a B.A. in Marketing from Michigan State University. He resides with wife and son in Sonoma, California.



Martin Reyes, D.W.S., CWE, CS, WSET-Certified, 2nd year Master of Wine Candidate

After leaving the Stanford bubble, Martin discovered the wine industry was where he wanted to be. Years of working the sales floor at K&L Wine Merchants transitioned into years of buying wines and spirits for a small but vibrant merchant called St Helena Wine Center in Napa Valley. Eventually he switched from the retail side to the importing side of the business, serving as the European Portfolio Buyer at Intervine, procuring duty-free wine selections for global cruise and airlines companies. He currently sources wine from around the world for esteemed wine programs such as Williams-Sonoma Wine, The New York Times Wine Club and FOOD & WINE magazine's wine club.

Martin is a Certified Wine Educator, (CWE), Certified Sommelier (CS) and holds a Diploma in Wine & Spirits from WSET, London (DWS).  Currently enrolled in the Masters of Wine Studies Programme, Martin hopes to become one of the first MW’s of Mexican-American descent someday. Fluent in Spanish, French, and Italian, rumor has it he’s recently gained a beginner’s grasp of German too.

 

Dan Culley-Rapata, D.W.S., CWE, WSET-Certified Educator 


Dan Culley-Rapata has spent the last ten years working in the wine industry in San Francisco, where he has had the opportunity to work with many amazing producers and restaurants at the epicenter of the American wine scene.

Dan began his career at Chicago Wine Merchants, where he played a role in selling Champagne and fine wine at the turn of the Millennium. In 2000, he took a position with San Francisco-based Chambers & Chambers Wine Merchants, one of the country’s most respected importers and distributors of fine wine.  Dan’s current position as a sales representative for Chambers & Chambers has given him the chance to educate customers about some of the world’s greatest wines and travel through the wine regions of France, Italy and the US.

In 2006, Dan passed the WSET Advanced course with distinction.  He earned his WSET Diploma in 2008, graduating with merit.  He is also a certified French Wine Scholar. Dan is taking a short reprieve from the Institute of Masters of Wine and will continue next year. He was also a judge at the California State Fair Wine Competition in 2009.  Every fall, he enjoys working as a harvest intern at York Creek Vineyards. If you have any questions, please feel free to email Dan at culleyrapata@gmail.com.

Gwendolyn (Wilson) Osborn, D.W.S., WSET-Certified

Gwendolyn is the Director of Education and Content and resident wine expert for Wine.com. She’s a wine educator at heart, hoping her enthusiasm for wine will increase peoples’ enjoyment of the beverage. Previously, she was the education coordinator for the Wine Spectator School, an online wine education program that teaches and promotes wine appreciation. She also worked extensively in the San Francisco area with Uncorked Events, teaching seminars in wine and helping to organize larger tastings. More recently, she put together and managed Wine.com’s Retail Outlet in Berkeley, California.

Her educational pursuits in wine have led her to travel extensively in wine regions, including France, Italy, Oregon, Chile, Argentina, South Africa, Australia and of course, California, meeting with top winemakers around the globe. She holds the Diploma in Wine & Spirits through the London-based WSET though this is by no means an end to her studies – wine knowledge is a never-ending pursuit – the more you know, the more you learn you don’t know and the more you want to taste!

 

Deborah Parker Wong, AIWS, WSET-Certified Educator

Deborah Parker Wong is Northern California editor for The Tasting Panel magazine where she reports on the global wine and spirits industries with an emphasis on domestic trends.  In addition, she contributes features on business and production technology toVineyard & Winery Management magazine.  Deborah co-authored1000 Great Everyday Wines published by Dorling Kindersley in 2011.

As a professional wine judge, Deborah juries a dozen regional, national and international wine competitions each year.  She holds the Wine and Spirits Education Trust (WSET) Diploma and is a certified WSET educator who conducts educational tastings for SOPEXA and presents consumer tastings for trade organizations including the producers of Ribera Del Duero.  Deborah is a member of the London-based Circle of Wine Writers and the Wine Media Guild of New York.

 

Christopher Parks, IWS, CWS, WSET-Certified

He is currently the Wine Director of Noir Lounge, an award-winning wine bar and restaurant in the Hayes Valley of San Francisco, where he is responsible for composing the wine, beer and cocktail lists. The multitude of different cuisines Chris has worked with, from Mediterranean, Italian and French to molecular gastronomical fare has provided Chris with a great understanding of the role that wine plays in different countries and cultures.

 

Mr. Parks has earned his Award in Wines & Spirits Level 3 (Advanced) Certificate from the Wine & Spirits Education Trust and is currently in the WSET Diploma Program. He holds other advanced certifications from North American Sommelier Association, Associazone Italiana Sommelier, The Craft Beer Institute, Sommelier Diploma from ISG, Society of Wine Educators and Cornell University.

 

 

Michael Donohue, M.A., WSET-Certified, Bordeaux Wine Council

Michael Donohue was born into a family of occasional beer, rye and Manischewitz drinkers but was really  bitten by the wine bug in university, when different red Côtes-du-Rhône prompted an ongoing investigation of why one could taste so much better than another. 

Following graduation with a Master of Arts in Philosophy, Michael worked in retail operations and then in high-tech (from 300 bps to ATM) all the while taking various wine courses, including the WSET Diploma*, and travelling to many of the world’s great vineyards. Michael has been teaching WSET courses for about 18 years and for the past decade was a Director of the Independent Wine Education Guild www.iweg.org, a WSET affiliate since 1977.  After getting whacked in the dot bomb era, he finally listened to those career consultants who say you should do what you love and the money will follow.

Before joining GalanteVineyards,  a youngish winery with huge accomplishments and a rich future, Michael co-founded Ne Plus Ultra Agencies, which represents >50 international wine and spirit producers and worked for two other companies with Chateaux Pétrus & Palmer, Grey Goose, Chave, Shafer, Caymus & Avignonese (amongst others) in their portfolio. Michael Donohue may be reached at mdonohue123@hotmail.com.

 

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