Associazione Italiana Sommelier (AIS)

For over half a century, the Italian Sommelier Association (AIS) has been at the forefront of promoting and disseminating the culture of wine. With a membership exceeding 40,000 individuals, AIS has consistently offered a wide array of activities, making it the hub for wine enthusiasts and professionals alike. Let’s delve into what being a part of this association entails and the vital role of sommeliers in the world of wine.

AIS: A Pillar of Wine Culture

The Association Italiana Sommelier (AIS) is renowned for its dedication to nurturing the appreciation and knowledge of wine. With more than 40,000 members, AIS has become a vital institution for wine connoisseurs and professionals in Italy and around the world.

One of the primary benefits of being an AIS member is access to a plethora of enriching activities. Members have the opportunity to engage in guided tastings, themed seminars, dinners, and study trips to vineyards and wineries, both within Italy and internationally. These experiences enable members to deepen their understanding of the diverse world of wine.

Additionally, AIS members participate in national and international wine congresses and symposia, providing them with insights into the latest developments in the wine industry. They also have exclusive access to prestigious wine events under privileged conditions.



The Versatile Role of a Sommelier

The role of a sommelier has evolved over the years, becoming increasingly versatile. AIS prepares its members for a wide range of professional opportunities. Traditionally, sommeliers have been associated with fine dining establishments both nationally and internationally. However, today’s sommeliers also find prestigious roles in wine distribution, wine consulting for wineries, strategic marketing for commercial chains, and communication.

AIS-trained sommeliers become the most authoritative spokespersons for wine culture, whether they are educators, technical experts, strategists, or consultants.

AIS’s Impact In Key Facts :

  1. Over 40,000 members passionately dedicated to the world of wine.
  2. 146 regional delegations, ensuring that AIS’s influence is felt across Italy.
  3. Conducting more than 1,000 courses annually, providing comprehensive wine education.
  4. Organizing over 2,000 events each year, offering a plethora of opportunities to taste and learn about wine.
  5. Uncorking an impressive 150,000+ bottles, showcasing the commitment to hands-on experience.
  6. Maintaining 100 tasting stations, ensuring rigorous training and assessment.
  7. Publishing 20 publications, sharing the latest insights and discoveries in the wine world.
  8. Hosting 16 competitions to foster excellence and innovation in the field.



Why Choose an AIS Sommelier Course?

AIS has been offering the most comprehensive wine education program since 1965. Structured into three levels, this course equips participants with the technical and cultural knowledge needed to become a certified sommelier. For those who meet the necessary requirements, it also paves the way to becoming a professional sommelier. The program is a rich and fulfilling experience for anyone passionate about wine.

AIS sommelier courses are structured into three levels and consist of a total of 45 lessons. The duration of the course, including the final sommelier certification exam, may vary depending on the specific course edition. On average, it takes about a year and a half to complete the program, but this can differ based on various factors.


AIS Central Office in Milan and Regional Branches

The AIS boasts a well-structured organizational framework, with its central office situated in the vibrant city of Milan. Complementing this central hub are numerous branches established in various regions across Italy. These regional branches oversee the operations of local delegations, which are active in nearly every province of the country. At the helm of each branch, dedicated presidents and delegates work tirelessly to promote local wine-related initiatives and foster a deeper understanding of the wine culture.

In addition to its educational mission, the Italian Sommelier Association plays a pivotal role in organizing a diverse range of food and beverage activities. These include expertly guided wine tastings, informative seminars, exquisite wine-paired dinners, enlightening visits to vineyards and wineries, and even luxurious wine-themed cruises. Moreover, the AIS serves as the host and key partner for numerous official professional wine evaluations, offering valuable services, consultations, and participating in prominent wine exhibitions, such as the renowned Vinitaly. Through these multifaceted initiatives, the AIS continues to champion the rich and diverse world of wine, both within Italy and on the global stage.


The AIS Italian Sommelier Association stands as a testament to the enduring passion for wine culture in Italy. With a rich history, an extensive network of members, and a commitment to education and exploration, the AIS has cemented its position as a pillar of the wine industry. Whether you’re a wine enthusiast, a budding sommelier, or a seasoned professional, the AIS offers a world of opportunities to explore, learn, and connect within the fascinating realm of wine. Cheers to the AIS and the remarkable world of wine it continues to cultivate.

FAQ Edition

The Ultimate Guide To Wines Certificates

The Associazione Italiana Sommelier, commonly known as AIS, has been a guiding force in Italy's illustrious wine culture for over half a century. With its central office located in the vibrant heart of Milan and a web of regional branches that extend to every corner of the country, AIS is a thriving community of wine enthusiasts, connoisseurs, and professionals. But what sets this organization apart? What role does the central office play, and how do the regional branches function? In this FAQ session, we embark on a journey to explore the vital role of AIS.

1. What is AIS, and what is its role in the world of wine?

The Associazione Italiana Sommelier, or AIS, is an esteemed organization dedicated to promoting and disseminating the rich culture of wine in Italy. With over 40,000 members and a history spanning more than five decades, AIS plays a pivotal role in wine education and appreciation.

2. Where is the main central office of AIS located, and what are its functions?

The central office of AIS is situated in the vibrant city of Milan, Italy. This central hub serves as the headquarters for the organization, overseeing its various branches and delegations throughout the country.

3. What is the significance of the regional branches within AIS?

AIS operates regional branches in every region of Italy, each featuring its president and delegates. These branches play a crucial role in promoting local wine-related initiatives and fostering a deeper understanding of wine culture in their respective areas.

4. How do I find my local AIS delegation?

To locate your local AIS delegation, you can reach out to the regional branch in your area. The regional branches supervise local delegations, which are typically active in almost every province throughout Italy.

5. Does AIS offer activities other than education?

Yes, besides its educational activities, AIS organizes a wide array of food and beverage events. These include expertly guided wine tastings, informative seminars, wine-paired dinners, captivating visits to vineyards and wineries, and even luxurious wine-themed cruises.

6. Is AIS involved in professional wine evaluations and exhibitions?

Absolutely. AIS takes pride in being a host and primary partner in official professional wine evaluations, offering various services, consultations, and actively participating in prominent wine exhibitions. One notable example is its involvement in Vinitaly, a renowned wine exhibition.

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