Dr. Runnebaum’s lab works on developing processes for more sustainable use of our natural resources, including those important in winemaking. These processes often involve the development and use of solid materials that can be regenerated and reused and can both replace the use of chemicals and reduce solid waste produced. For example, researchers in the lab have begun studying alternatives to bentonite for protein fining by using solid materials as adsorbents in a continuously operated column.
On June 4th the Department organized a Wine Flavor 101 program on campus titled “Managing Red Wine Quality”. After an overview by Anita Oberholster (Cooperative Extension Specialist in Enology), a great selection of talks by Professors Dave Block, Jim Harbertson and Andy Waterhouse covered topics such as the impact of cap management, fermentation temperature, extended maceration, exogenous tannins and micro-oxygenation on wine composition and potentially quality. The findings of many of these research studies were supported by wine tastings.