Both wine tasting and cooking demonstrations are well attended on most of the cruises I have been on. The wine tastings feature wines that are on the wine list, and for the occasional wine drinker, like myself, the sampling provides a chance to find a wine I might like with dinner. We have seen a number of cooking demonstrations, on Celebrity ships, that take place in the centrum or on deck and draw large crowds of interested passengers. Given a chance to see your chef in action seems to add something to the experience. We particularly enjoy longer cruises with a number of sea days, where there are more of these activities. With Celebrity's expanded guest celebrity program there may be real interest in expanding the food and wine lecture choices.
If you are talking about real learning about wines... it's a much different thing than the "wine tasting" on Celeb ships. They are really little more than marketing sessions for the wines sold on board. Don't get me wrong... such is not an entirely bad thing, as can be noted in prior posts. However, they don't really teach much about wine other than the simplist pointers. I would be interested in a "real" wine seminar.
The classes I will be giving accomodate beginner to advanced. They are not open to all passengers(contact me for details). The classes will begin with New England wines and food, taking advantage of our visiting chef from Newport Rhode Island. Later on I will cover other regional and international wines. This is not the usual one hour class given by the cruise wine sommelier,but a whole series of wine tastings, perhaps daily if the demand is there. E mail me at the above address if you are interested in more info on the cruise and the private classes.
Last month on the Horizon we were invited (Elite) to a special wine blending program which we enjoyed very much. The wines were 1997 Kendall Jackson and we had the opportunity to take the basic wines and blend them to our own taste, using a sphagnometer (sure it's spelled wrong). I've been to many wine tastings/dinners, etc. This was something very different and special. I hope it continues on future Celebrity cruises.
Cruisemadame: These classes will be offered on the Celebrity Millennium Jan.16-23, 2005 Eastern Caribbean cruise. If the demand is sufficient I will do daily wine classes, some of them with the executive chef, Robert Daugherty, from the Newport Hyatt Regency. As the 7/17 message stated, you must book through Donovan Travel(see newportstylecruising.com for all the details). I am in the process of outling my classes. If you have more questions, feel free to contact me at email@example.com.