New Amazing Deal – Give The Gift Of Learning

The latest Brad Feld Amazing Deal is online.

A few weeks ago I was approached by Sympoz, a company in Boulder that is excited about building online classrooms where anyone can take a courses in categories like Wine, Personal Finance, Cooking, etc. The have a nice looking site, and their classes are self serve, at your own pace, in HD. They have forums where you can interact with fellow classmates and teachers. Classes range in price from $39 to $99.

They asked me what I thought, and I told them I thought they should offer up some classes on my Brad Feld’s Amazing Deal Store. They agreed to give my readers a great deal. $19 for any class that in their inventory.  And, I’m putting my money where my mouth is – I just bought (using my Amazing Deal site) the Wine Demystified course.

If you have a love of learning, or are looking for an interesting gift, give Sympoz a try by purchasing this deal. You could become an wine expert for less than the cost of a decent bottle.

  • Thanks Brad for helping us offer this deal! We’re really excited to share our online learning platform. We feel strongly that everyone should have access to a terrific lifelong learning experience. To us this means:

    • Great Courses: Sympoz makes learning fun and relevant. Our courses cover our students passions and needs: Hobbies, Life Stages, Career Advancement, Social Issues, and Academic Subjects

    • Dynamic Instructors: Sympoz gives students access to terrific instructors. We look for instructors who can take the complex and make it compelling and who share our passion for the open exchange of ideas and perspectives

    • Engaging, Participatory Learning Environment: Sympoz brings the best elements of a great traditional classroom to life online – enabling our students learn in an engaging way through the exchange of ideas with their instructor and classmates

    • Convenience & Flexibility: Sympoz helps students fit learning into their already busy schedules. Sympoz courses are available for you to enjoy on your own schedule and at your own pace

    If anyone has questions or feedback, feel free to get in touch: [email protected]

    Thanks again Brad and everyone who checks out our deal!
    -The Sympoz Team

    • Sympoz (and Brad) – we’d love to help drive students to you. Do you have an affiliate program in place? Please reach out (@teachstreet) or dave@ our site ( Love the site!

      Dave (founder of TeachStreet)

  • Sympoz sounds to be an interesting brand. This is the very first time I am hearing about this. I always like personal finance and would love to try them for a class on it.
    Best Website Designer l Best Website Design

  • Anonymous


    Can get a good Chianti or Mâcon for maybe $10 a bottle!

    Here may learn something for free!

    All the native grapes in Europe are just different varieties of the species ‘vinifera’. They have one seed, skins that range from blond to nearly black, and the juice is always clear. In the US, the native grapes are quite different, e.g., have several small seeds and have juice that can have color, e.g., Welch’s Concord grape juice.

    Grapes do not ‘reproduce true to seed’ which means if plant one, then what will grow can be different from its parents.

    Thus grapes quickly ‘adapt’ to their local soil, weather, etc. It happened all over Europe since the last Ice Age.

    If find a grape vine that like, the way to get more is to take cuttings. In the same geography, it works fine.

    If have a vine that really like from, say, somewhere between Mâcon and Dijon in France, chances will like it grown elsewhere are not so good. They mostly don’t move the cuttings around in Europe; bringing them to the US is ubiquitous but at best questionable.

    Thus in Europe the most important ‘characterization’ of a wine is its geographical region, maybe the size of a putting green.

    How did wine making start? Easy: Make grape juice and don’t drink it fast enough. Bugs will convert the sugar to ethyl alcohol.

    Make vinegar? After the alcohol, let air get to it and bugs will convert the alcohol to acetic acid. To stop this, make good glass bottles and get good corks.

    Red wine? Leave the skins in when the alcohol is being generated, and the alcohol will dissolve the colors, etc. from the skins. Typically get more flavor from red wines.

    Some strong red wines taste better after some years resting in a bottle, and the best red wines are like this. There are complicated chemicals and reactions.

    Bouquet? For a good red wine, remove the cork, let air get to the wine, and there is a chemical reaction that generates a lot of aromas that can be nice. The other flavors can be improved.

    White wines? Typically they taste worse after some years in a bottle. Some with a lot of sugar, a very few from France, many from Germany, will last years in a bottle.

    Little or no sugar left means the wine is ‘dry’. More acid in a white wine makes it taste ‘crisp’. Delicate, good flavors make a white wine taste ‘clean’. Except for Germany, only a few specific wines are left sweet, and all the rest are from dry to bone dry.

    Sparkling wines? Make a (usually white) wine, put a little sugar in the bottle, get another fermentation, with the bottle upside down, let the solids fall to the cork, remove the solids, put the cork back in, and charge much more.

    The red good stuff? In Bordeaux, west coast of France, west bank of the Gironde River, use mostly Cabernet Sauvignon grapes and get Bordeaux or, in England, claret. Better from the Haut-Médoc with fields Margaux, Médoc, Saint-Julien, Pauillac, or Saint-Estèphe. The good stuff there was called good in a ranking in 1855 and still goes for big bucks and has famous names, Château Lafite Rothschild, Château Margaux, etc.

    More red good stuff: From a little south of the town of Beaune, the fields Volany and Pommard, then around Beaune, and from there north through Nuit St. George, Corton, etc., up to Chambertin, etc. to Dijon. The grape is Pinot Noir, dark red, but also popular for Champagne. Nearly all the wine is red. The good stuff is famous, e.g., La Tâche, from a patch of land comparable in area with a large putting green, and will set back nearly anyone.

    The region is called Burgundy and also the Côte d’Or, coast of gold, for a good reason: Per acre it may be the most valuable farm real estate in the world. Their idea of a fence around a field is marble walls. The value is not new — Napoleon liked Chambertin. So do I. There is a famous dish, Coq au Chambertin — lucky chicken!

    White good stuff: From the Chardonnay grape, mostly south of Beaune down to Mâcon. The famous one is Montrachet, really set you back, again from a field the size of a large putting green, Hitchcock liked. Actually all the whites around Mâcon, selected with a little care, can be terrific. They are ‘crisp, clean, dry’. Cold with a delicate appetizer, terrific.

    There are other good wines, red, white, and sparkling, from roughly the same latitudes, from Spain, parts of Germany, northern and central Italy, and east into Eastern Europe. It’s ALL different ‘varieties’ of just vinifera.

    Bargains: The less well known wines of France.

    Chardonnay is very popular in the US, but only a tiny fraction of US buyers know that Mâcon is Chardonnay so that Mâcon can be a bargain.

    Bordeaux, outside of the famous names of the Haut-Médoc, but still on the west bank of the Gironde River and also on the east bank, e.g., St. Emilion. Get a wine a tee shot from a famous château and pay only 5% as much. So, when go shopping, take a map.

    Also there is the Rhone Valley with Hermitage, …, Châteauneuf du Pape, etc.

    Italy and Spain present good bargains.

    There is a LOT of good wine in Europe, but it is not easy to know in the US just what is good.

    The US? UC Davis may have the best wine expertise in the world; the care, technology, and equipment in CA are terrific.

    Why mostly only CA? In nearly all the rest of the US, weather is wrong — sun too hot, get too much mold from humidity too high, winter comes on too fast, etc.

    CA works hard to grow Cabernet Sauvignon, Pinot Noir, and Chardonnay — all a LONG way from home.

    Then there’s CA ‘taste’: For the whites, they don’t want dry, crisp, and clean but sweet, flat (low acid), and fruity. They want Del Monte Fruit Cocktail or fruit salad juice with some alcohol. I prefer Del Monte!

    The reds? Again sweet, flat, and fruity, but with oak and tannins, with too many flavors wildly out of balance. Welch’s Concord grape juice is better.

    US sweet sparkling wines? For something better, take your choice — Coke or Pepsi!

    I poured too many CA wines down the drain and gave up. They get what they want, but it’s not what I want.

    Europe has a HUGE advantage: Their wine grapes are ones that have adapted since the last Ice Age. Humans have been selecting the geography, grapes, and wine making techniques for over 2000 years. Maybe in another 10,000 years, other regions will have good wine!

    How to learn? I started with just:

    Frank Schoonmaker, ‘Schoonmaker’s Encyclopedia of Wine’, Hastings House, New York.

    He was a GI in WWII in Europe, got started, was a buyer, kept notes at the levels of country, region, field, shipper, and château, and then wrote his book. It’s expert information and totally unpretentious.

    I was writing software around DC and took this book to the wine shops at the southern end of Wisconsin Avenue.

    Simple subject: Mostly just buy the bargains and enjoy at dinner parties with appropriate food.

    Computer viruses? Recently got my first ever — what torture is appropriate for programmers who write software vulnerable to ‘buffer overflows’? ‘System administration and management’ for SQL Server? Also a simple subject that, however, available documentation makes hard for no good reason. Else I’d be MUCH closer to giving a dinner party for a few dozen people on a 200′ yacht with good food a case of each of Montrachet and La Tâche.

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