Find your cullinary voice

Understanding Wine

Danny Meyer's USHG Understanding Wine course at ICEICE partners with Union Square Hospitality Group

It's no secret among aspiring restaurant professionals that the restaurants within Danny Meyer’s Union Square Hospitality Group (USHG) are great places to share their talents with guests, enjoy food and wine, learn and grow to become a wine connoisseur. Much like at ICE, USHG demonstrates its commitment to teaching through robust internal education programs on topics ranging from cheese, to craft beer, spirits, and of course, wine.

USHG's Wine Director and certified Master Sommelier, John Ragan, helps to develop and support the dynamic wine programs throughout USHG, each of which is characterized by thoughtful and interesting choices, exceptional value, and helpful service—whether in the dining room at The Modern or pairing wine with barbecue at Blue Smoke.

Register Now for ICE and USHG's Understanding Wine series.For the first time ever, ICE has partnered with Ragan and the USHG team and added their proven educational experience and resources in order to launch a groundbreaking collaborative wine class in NYC taught from a restaurant perspective. Ragan will lead the ten-week wine education course, which until now, has been offered to USHG staff only.

This series of wine classes will combine ICE’s renowned educational expertise and resources with USHG’s signature warm hospitality and uncommon excellence. Each session will be taught by Ragan, with guest instructors including ICE Director of Wine and Beverage Studies, Richard Vayda as well as Wine Directors and Sommeliers from Union Square Cafe, Gramercy Tavern, The Modern, and more.

Through dynamic tastings, multimedia presentations, and access to USHG and ICE’s team of beverage professionals, students will gain a rich knowledge of the world of wines and insight into award-winning wine programs.

Understanding Wine with USHG at ICECourse Details

Date and Time: Tuesdays, April 28-June 30, 2016, 6:30-9pm
Tuition: $1,750 for ten classes
To register: Click here or call (888) 957-CHEF.

Ten-Week Course Curriculum

Lesson 1: Wine Tasting Like a Pro
Lesson 2. From the Vineyard to the Table
Lesson 3. Wines from the New World
Lesson 4. Bordeaux vs. Burgundy
Lesson 5. France - Off the Beaten Path
Lesson 6. The World of Riesling - Alsace, Austria, & Germany
Lesson 7. Italian Holiday - Touring Italy from North to South
Lesson 8. Picks from the Peninsula - Spain & Portugal
Lesson 9. Sparkling Wine - Champagne & Beyond
Lesson 10. Mapping your Palate - Pairing Food & Wine

John Ragan Master Sommelier to teach ICE & USHG Understanding Wine series

About John Ragan

As Director of Wine and Restaurant Operations, USHG's James Beard Award-winning Master Sommelier, John Ragan, works with each of the group's acclaimed restaurants to ensure exceptional and distinctive wine programs as well as employee education. Previously, John spent five years as Wine Director of Eleven Madison Park, where he earned a Grand Award from Wine Spectator. He is one of three individuals in the world to have been awarded both a James Beard Award for "Outstanding Wine Service" as well as the title of Master Sommelier from the prestigious Court of Master Sommeliers.

Click here to read an interview with John Ragan on the ICE Blog.

Recent News and Press

ICE and Union Square Hospitality Group's "Understanding Wine" has recently been featured in the following publications:
The New York Times

Wine Enthusiast

Business Insider

Virtual Gourmet


Crain's New York Business

Union Square Hospitality Group Restaurant logos.Richard Vayda to teach ICE and USHG Understanding Wine series